Published 7/31/2017

Svensson chosen for project in New York City

In Morningside Gardens in Northern Manhattan, MRHS - Morningside Retirement & Health Services - has been active for over 50 years. This spring and summer, residents are excited to experience the recently completed transformation of its dated community centre into a stylish and functional gathering and group-activity space where older residents can socialize and meet for a wide range of activities.

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Morningside Heights community center, designed by Hollwich Kushner Architects and Wagner Interior Architecture & Consulting


The successful design – a collaboration between architect Matthias Hollwich and interior designer Susanne Wagner – incorporates three fabrics from Svensson to create a welcoming atmosphere. Fabric-covered pillows in deep window sills provide comfortable seating, and are also easy to clean and keep fresh, an important attribute for a centre that is used daily by many people. For this application Susanne chose “Add”, a fabric that is easy to combine, washable and highly durable, making it ideal for demanding environments.

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Morningside Heights community center, designed by Hollwich Kushner Architects and Wagner Interior Architecture & Consulting


For the big windows, Susanne was looking for a translucent curtain that would filter the brilliant New York light on sunny days just enough to provide a pleasant but still bright interior, and add fresh colour. For this purpose, she chose a combination of two fabrics, “Ara” and “Focus”.

“Ara gives a wonderful light and the colour radiance is beautiful. At MRHS the green/yellow colour complemented the red brick walls outside the windows and created a perfect combination.” says Susanne Wagner.

The curtain "Focus" was picked to control light and heat and add some additional colour: “I love Focus as a product! It provides solar control and keeps the warmth out. It’s a stiff product but it falls in a natural way.”

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Morningside Heights community center, designed by Hollwich Kushner Architects and Wagner Interior Architecture & Consulting


Both Matthias and Susanne are experts in designing for older adults. Matthias Hollwich whose architecture firm is based in New York City, is focused on designing fully accessible communities for elders that enable them to stay socially connected. Susanne Wagner who is practicing from Konstanz (Germany), was happy to bring to the project her European sensibility and her deep experience designing for older adults in Germany and Switzerland. The project started about three years ago when they presented their vision for MRHS for the board, and was finalized this spring with the opening of the new space.

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