The design challenge was to develop furniture elements to create a large-scale, unified landscape environment that stands up to the scale of the atrium – inviting visitors and guests to use the lobby space in a variety of ways. The inspiration for the 150’ long sofa was drawn both from Sol Lewitt’s painting Loopy Doopy (1999) and the serpentine hedges of the Irish countryside. (The Irish Hunger Memorial is immediately to the west of the Hotel.)
The sofa comprises three sections that curve and reverse to respond to the client’s functional requirements for seating for check-in and guest functions, lobby lounge areas for all times of day and evening, and café seating just outside the restaurant. The result is a large sculptural piece that forms an architectural landscape within the vast 15-storey atrium space of the new Conrad Hotel. The sofa has varying back heights to offer differing levels of privacy and the shaping of the curves acknowledges the variety of uses and crisscrossing circulation in this active public space.
The custom sofa was manufactured by Moroso, who also made the over-scaled ottomans and the swivel chairs that are part of the composition. The swivel chairs were developed in a collaborative process on site at the Moroso factory in Udine, Italy.