December 19th, 2011

The Ace Hotel recently collaborated with the Comex Group and Arkitip on a project that introduced different color combinations into a small block of rooms at the hotel’s Palm Springs location. I headed out with a small group of participating designy type folks to spend a few nights in these experimental color spaces. After staying in a few different rooms we discussed how each color shift changed the space and our mood.

Yes, I totally ended up interviewing on camera. Pretty much my ultimate sweaty awkward nightmare.

Besides the filmed voyage into my uncomfortable zone, I stayed in three of the five rooms : the indigo and pink, cerulean and navy and the mushroom and turquoise. Even though I didn’t stay in every color combo, all the participants got to see every room and feel sad about the ones we missed (with a fireplace). I also attempted to hectically photograph them all before checking out on Sunday. Thinking I did pretty awesome after about four days with about zero hours of sleep.

So, above is the pink and indigo room.

This was my first room and the only one I violently hated. Well, only initially violently hated. When I first arrived it was dark and super late and maybe I was exhausted and somehow this space seemed like some kind of massage parlor of ill repute. When the sun rose though, it was actually kind of awesome and my feelings warmed up.

I shockingly enjoy some neon pink accents – especially the way these are photographing, but for some reason, how this looked in real life didn’t wow me as much. I liked it much better in daylight than I did the night before, but I think it almost needed a bit more florescent hotness (not comfortable with that phrase usually).


My second night was spent in the cerulean and navy room.

This combo ended up feeling pretty cohesive with the hotels original furniture and accessories, like it appeared to be the most seamless and unobtrusive or possibly the most calming color shift of the bunch. I almost wanted the lighter blue to be a bit more brightly florescent after spending time in the hot pink room. Florescent = fun? What is happening to me.

Weirdly, this combo didn’t photograph as well as I assumed it would.

My last night was spent in the turquoise and mushroom room.

Not a huge fan of this one.

Maybe this felt a bit too South Beach for the desert light and dusty colors I love and know so well? So, mainly not loving this particular combo, but was definitely enjoying how these big injections of color started totally changing how the rooms felt overall and gave the usually all white slats some architectural dimension.

Abby stayed in the yellow room.

This was a whole lot of yellow.

I can’t handle tons of yellow, but the gray accent was amazing and I kind of wish the two colors had been flipped. I can get behind some bright yellow as an accent with a more neutral gray backdrop, especially when nursing a brutal hangover from too many roadrunners the night before.

ALL yellow = eyes imploding into aching brain.

Yup. Still love a simple black porcelain socket with a big clear bulb.

A super simple and affordable combo that just might be appearing in a great project I’ve been working on with Laure. Can’t wait to share.

The color slats do make the Robert Lewis Love Lights stand out way more than ever before and look somehow less cheap? I hate thinking that but I was never a Love Light fan until this trip.

Now I’m digging these things, especially the soft light they give off. Super sexy time. Paired with a great wall color behind? Yes please.

The green room.

Didn’t stay in here but kind of dig it when paired with the patio and plants outside. Although I somehow weirdly want my desert rooms to feel sparse and dry and golden and neutral…so maybe the green is too lush? Too dark?


Acapalco chair. I love you.

Notice the black paint inside the white planters that hide all the ugly dirt? GREAT trick.

Yellow room with yellow chairs?

Give it.

Anyone notice that all the kilim rugs are now cowhides? I wonder why? Maybe it’s just these rooms…

I’ve long been a fan of the cowhide as rug since they can take a ton of abuse and still look good. It’s possibly the perfect rug for spaces with high amounts of foot traffic or very careless carpet owners. Maybe the kilims were too delicate and got thrashed? Who knows…

Many thank again to Arkitip and The Comex Group for inviting everyone to come out and participate in this color experiment and  super big thanks to Alex and The Ace Hotel for putting up with us and being so generous.

I had a great time with my ladies and my boy and all the new folks we got to chat up, eat, drink, and swim with – even loved meeting the naked grandma who taught us the simple truths and ways of the sauna. Everyone was super cute and well dressed and made me very nervous, but despite my tendency to always feel a tad dumpy chubby country mouse in this type of situation, it was a great experience and super fun little getaway. Also, must note that I was especially glad to finally meet Miranda Jones in the real life. You lady, you are the funnest.

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  1. Christina on 12/19/2011:

    I’m sad to say I couldn’t stay at this fine establishment. The fabric covered walls that are neither billowy nor crisply tailored would make me twitch – and not in a good way. I would be getting my staple gun out and trying to tidy up those light switch plates. Even as I write this I’m thinking about how to solve this – perhaps velcro or hot glue would be better? And, the art seems to be messy as well – not very thoughtfully placed or chosen. I can’t even look at the differences in the colour because this other stuff is distracting from the original exercise. I believe this is more about my OCD tendencies than anything else.

  2. Annio on 12/19/2011:

    I don’t care for this at all. It looks cheap, messy, unfinished to me. I wouldn’t want that at home so I sure wouldn’t want it in a hotel.

  3. Anna - Canoe Design on 12/19/2011:

    What a cool looking place – love the photos.
    I am more partial to the dark blue headboard colour.
    Sounds like it was an amazing time! Thanks for the inspiration.

  4. John on 12/19/2011:

    i have never seen those black porcelain sockets before !
    why can’t i find on them anywhere on the worldwideweb ?
    anyone know a source ?

  5. jeannette on 12/19/2011:

    the strap on bed lamps. i…i…
    i’ll have to think about that.
    the slats and the painters’ drop cloth tent effect give me jailhouse claustrophobia. wow.
    i will have to take this under advisement, since you are the kewelest person in the world and you didn’t hate it. but you were only asked to rule on color, yes? not strap on torture in a jail cell. argh.

  6. 2226modern on 12/19/2011:

    I have always wanted to stay at an ACE hotel…but not in any of these rooms. They look cheap, unfinished, and messy! There are so many awesome mid century hotels in Palm Springs that are decorated much nicer at a fraction of the overpriced rooms of the ACE.

  7. Cynthia Wig on 12/19/2011:

    Eek, they’ve messed with what was previously awesome. What are they doing? I don’t get it.

  8. Becky on 12/19/2011:

    Is this a joke?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????!

  9. Ahsan on 12/20/2011:

    ACE Hardware Hotel

    Slats, paint, drop cloth… what else are sourced from ACE Hardware store?

  10. Jennifer on 12/20/2011:

    Loving the beds. Do you think those exist outside of Ace or were a custom solution?

  11. jessica on 12/20/2011:

    I don’t know. I’m not buying it. I know they need to switch things up occasionally, but this feels forced and trying to hard? But I have a natural aversion to some of these colors so maybe I’m just being square. I just know when I stay at the ace I’m comforted by the sparse, dry feeling and muted color. Love all the canvas tones and the kilim rugs. In short, I would likely request a “non pink” room next stay.

  12. The brick house on 12/20/2011:

    Oh no, these rooms aren’t staying this way. It was a project for the Comex group really – testing out color and it’s effect on people.

  13. so what did the test turn out?

  14. Sophie on 12/20/2011:

    The best view is from the beds. Of the beds? Puke. Your photos are awesome though.

  15. THE BRICK HOUSE on 12/20/2011:

    YHBHS – ummmmm, I don’t really know. It was a tad confusing?

  16. FURIOUS on 12/21/2011:

    I’m digging the simple black porcelain ceiling socket bigtime, but can’t seem to source it – at least so far. Any ideas folks?

  17. THE BRICK HOUSE on 12/21/2011:

    Spray paint a basic porcelain lamp socket black. That’s all it is! Super cheap and easy. Or spend $45 at Commune :

  18. FURIOUS on 12/21/2011:

    I thought it & even suspected this’d be what you’d say. Thanks, Morgan.

  19. Mamaholt on 12/22/2011:

    I’m always pleased to see anything different. I don’t like any of it, but better to do anything than be safe and do nothing, right? Those lights remind me of dog penises. That’s just me though. weeeeeeeeeeeee

  20. Tamoto on 12/23/2011:

    The Ace Hardware Hotel! Good one! Ace hardware meets Urban Outfitters. No bueno

  21. Rita on 12/23/2011:

    Those are lights? I thought they were complimentary pleasure devices…much better than chocolates on pillows.

  22. Craig on 12/25/2011:

    Check out the Saguaro Hotel in Scottsdale by Stamberg Aferiat architects. Intense color in a desert setting (more competently rendered in my opinion). Love your blog.

  23. Miranda on 12/30/2011:

    a shout out by Ms Morgan????! 2011 is complete and can now end. Goodnightthankyouverymuch.

  24. bigBANG studio on 01/01/2012:

    Catching up here and just have to say, Morgan, you do NOT disappoint. Ever. This post is what makes me love you even more than when you wrote that hysterical post about your lawn woes, which is to say VERY, VERY MUCH.

    Sending you 2012 love and hugs and grey rooms with yellow accents and not the other way around.

  25. amy on 01/14/2012:

    acapulco chair with rocker? it is rocking awesome! where do you find?

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