Restorations involving major changes in a building’s use typically challenge designers with either a lack or an excess of space, but in this case the four-story, 125,000-square-foot temple certainly sufficed. Instead, designing the interior to accompany a newly restored façade provided the principal challenge and required broad creativity. The exterior restoration includes new entrances as well as reconstructed onion domes and enhancement of the stained-glass windows, both fundamental aspects of the original 1913 design. A metalic sheen adds modernity to the domes and complements the suspended awning, now brightened by outdoor lighting.
The interior architect designed the inside to complement the temple’s distinctive exterior. Elliptical floor layouts mirror prominent domed ceilings, inducing a flow of shoppers around the central atrium, which features a glass elevator. Ceilings are accented with their original plaster coffers and bordered by authentic stained-glass windows creating a contrast between the historic ambiance of the temple and the contemporary visual displays for which Bloomingdale’s is known. Extensive black and white checkerboard flooring enriches the shopping atmosphere with simple, modern elegance.
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