Jekyll Island, GA
In 1995, Smith Dalia Architects participated in a pilot master plan to establish guidelines for preservation and improvement of the Jekyll Island Historic District, Club Hotel and the historic Crane & Cherokee Cottages — one of the largest restoration projects of its time in the Southeast. A National Historic Landmark, the Jekyll Island Club Hotel is a four-star and four-diamond resort, six miles off the coast of Georgia.
SDA’s plan included a 66-room addition to the hotel, a conference center expansion, and the adaptive use of the cottages into additional guest quarters. Multiple improvements to site circulation, scenic views, and sensitive restoration of historic structures and gardens improved the hotel’s efficiency while enhancing the historic destination experience.
The work included the challenge of authentic historic restoration with modern adaptive use. Echoes of the Gilded Age, Crane and Cherokee Cottages, c. 1900, are excellent examples of the Italian Renaissance style. Crane’s formal architecture includes an Italian-influenced courtyard surrounded by groin-vaulted loggias. According to the Architectural Record of 1924, “Crane Cottage was the most expensive and elegant winter home ever built at Jekyll.” Cherokee Cottage takes its name from the Cherokee roses that once surrounded this private river’s-edge villa, and reflects a less formal neoclassical interpretation, using lighter materials.
Retaining historic architectural features while retrofitting the facilities with state-of-the-art systems required extensive planning and custom applications. The interior restoration included the use of historic color palates, recreated light fixtures and coordinated interior design, mingling both European and American furniture. This approach captured the comfort, style and leisurely elegance of the original interiors.
Interior Design by Libby Simms Patrick, Sims Patrick Studio, Inc., Atlanta
Awarded• 2002 The Georgia Trust Award for Excellence in Rehabilitation
• 2001 Georgia AIA Design Merit Award (Crane and Cherokee Cottages Renovations)
• 2000 Georgia Association of General Contractors Historic Preservation Award