HGTV Design Star Revs Up Pasadena Quality Inn
The brand Quality Inn doesn't conjure up much excitement when talking design and style, but that might begin to change. The brand doesn't require corporate-wide duplication of a mundane design footprint, and according to our source,"Some flexibility for the owner-franchisee to select décor is allowed." So we were thrilled to find a Quality Inn owner in Pasadena, California who hired season five HGTV Design Star, Julie Khuu to re-imagine their hotel.
Using vibrant colors and strong pattern-on-pattern play, in some ways this mid-scale category accommodation now looks like a luxury hotel that should command more than its average $84 a night rate (which includes breakfast). But there's one little problem:
The design didn't carry all the way to the bedrooms. So, what did Khuu do?
For her “ global bazaar” theme, Khuu scoured nearby Rose Bowl Flea Market for antique finds to pair with modern fabrics and finishes to create a mix of old and new, much like the city of Pasadena itself. She revved up the common areas including the tired lobby and re-oriented the registration desk, as well as added a playful seating area. A small library put some defining touches on the conference area. The high-school gym feel of the dank spa and pool area was solved by putting in decking and lounge seating with plump pillows to make hanging out at the pool, well, cool.
Is this upscale-ish re-do an indication that Choice Hotels' Quality Inns are ready to launch a brand-wide boutique style upgrade? We can't get anyone to confirm that this is the wave of the future, but stay tuned.
[Photos: Julie Khuu/HGTV]