THE CONRAD is set to open in 2015 – a 24-story ocean tower with exquisite upgrades World Class: The Conrad experience comes to Fort Lauderdale Beach
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At first glance, one might not be aware that the new Conrad Fort Lauderdale Resort and Residences was in fact designed by the dean of the post-modern movement in American architecture, Michael Graves, along with architect-of-record Oscar Garcia. But look closely and signs of the master are everywhere. Huge, porthole-like openings in the façade frame ocean views. Nearby, a classically-inspired colonnade around the pool is lined with tall, slender trees reminding one of the open loggias and colonnades Graves used at his first public commission, the San Juan Capistrano Public Library, now considered a design landmark.
Graves and his team collaborated with Garcia on the conceptual design, the massing and façades, and Michael Graves Associates took primary responsibility for the interiors of the 24-story tower, furnishing the suites with items like his signature windowpane chairs and custom-designed carpeting. Both of the architects seem to have agreed that the building's signature curve at the top – dictated by zoning – recalled the forms of early 20th century ocean-liners, and used that as a logical point of departure for the building's elegant design.
But now that the tower is preparing to open as the five-star Conrad, one of only a handful of properties to house Hilton's global luxury brand, it is Garcia of Garcia Stromberg who is in charge of a $34 million enhancement that is intended to transform this tower into the best address in town. Garcia is designing a glass-enclosed addition to the project as well as an oceanfront dining experience, a state-of-the-art fitness center, a Conrad Spa and more.
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