Sweet Southern Hospitality in a New Charleston Hotel
By LINDSAY TALBOT
Workstead, a rising design firm, makes its South Carolina debut with the Dewberry, a 155-room hotel built in the shell of the 1964 L. Mendel Rivers Federal Building overlooking Charleston’s Marion Square. “We wanted to explore the idea of Southern Modernism,” says co-founder Robert Highsmith. Taking cues from Milan’s Villa Necchi Campiglio, Havana’s Hotel Nacional, and Slim Aarons, they mixed midcentury Danish antiques with nods to the Lowcountry, such as oak salvaged from a tobacco barn in Georgia.
They also enlisted a roster of regional creatives: the brass city map hanging in the cherry-paneled lobby was fabricated by Peyton Avrett, whose grandmother worked in the original office tower. It’s no wonder that old Charlestonians have made themselves right at home, sinking into mohair settees in the Living Room bar and sipping highballs under slow-spinning ceiling fans at Wes Morton’s brasserie.