AJC Design specializes in hospitality design, residential and multi-family design projects for clients anywhere in the world. Creativity is Everything!™ is the mantra that has fueled AJC Design’s work since its inception in 2007. A vivid, unhindered imagination is at the core of every one of our compelling projects, no two which are the same. That’s why our company logo depicts a hardy walnut shell. While one half references our own passion for dreaming up one-of-a-kind designs and our dedication to making them a reality, the other is an ode to our clients, whose ideas and visions are just as integral to the design process. Built on communication, this mutual, respectful relationship is the foundation for all of AJC Design’s intricate, timeless interiors. We are energetic and honest and keep our clients well informed, involved, and comfortable, learning and laughing along the way.
Creativity is Everything!™ is integrated into all of our studio capabilities and embedded in our signature design process. Our work is customized for each project and client’s needs, so that no two projects are the same, and every project reflects creativity, imagination and original thinking.
Each client relationship starts with generating a creative vision for the project through concept design, which builds the foundation for the rest of the project. We continue our creative journey through schematic design, design development, construction documentation, and construction administration, where the project is actualized.
Creativity is Everything!™ means being able to see possibilities no one else can see, to create what nobody else has created, at a budget that works for your needs first. We infuse Creativity is Everything!™ to transform empirical knowledge into sketches, renderings, construction documents, and custom FF&E designs that reflect our client’s vision, goals, and brand, as well as the social / historical context of the project’s physical location.
Alicia Cannon, founder and principal of New York-based AJC Design, flaunts a signature style that melds dramatic, pop-inspired pieces with tailored, classic settings, fostered by her collaborations with the likes of luxury brands and urban artists.
Cannon’s vast expertise spans full-service and luxury hotels, inviting private residences, and vibrant workplaces. Consider the Hyatt Regency Greenwich, awash in coastal Connecticut charm; the Lanes, a multi-use, ground-up Long Island City residential building capped with a rooftop terrace; or the Long Island headquarters of the brand-new Opal Wealth Advisors
In 2015 Cannon was named one of Hospitality Design’s Wave of the Future honourees, the same year that she won a Stevie Award Bronze, attesting to how she infuses each of her projects with both professionalism and ingenuity, her top priority always capturing and nurturing a client’s vision. That’s why the Woman Business Enterprise-certified designer loves spending ample time getting to know every single one of them personally and embarks on a true partnership to unite functionality and rich, aesthetic details.
Recent AJC Design work includes the Sheraton Mahwah in New Jersey, which draws on the hotel’s past as the former Ford Motor headquarters; the Sheraton Wilmington South hotel, complete with soaring atrium; the lobby at the Westin Riverwalk in San Antonio that calls to mind the Spanish Colonial era; and a design competition culminating in two guestroom schemes for the Bellagio in Las Vegas that telegraph the Italian village of Bellagio in Lake Como. AJC Design has also completed the Thayer Hotel in West Point, New York, Hotel Indigo in downtown Brooklyn, and the Westport Inn in Connecticut, and is currently working on the Renaissance New York Harlem Hotel, slated to open in 2020, as well as the Thayer Resort and Spa scheduled for 2022.
Cannon is a graduate of the Pratt Institute, where she cultivated her childhood passion for transforming humdrum interior spaces into enduring, matchless designs.
Last month, we got some inspiration from Victor Sanz, Creative Director at TUMI. This month, as we face the end of summer blues, we’re featuring our favorite creative director and founder and Principal of AJC Design, Alicia Cannon. In this blog, hear about Alicia’s pandemic shifts, NYC hot spots, and lessons learned along the way. (The featured image and sapphire blue sofa is from the lobby from the Riverwalk Westin project in San Antonio, Texas.)
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: Are there any new projects from AJC Design that you are excited to launch (and can share with us)?
AJC: We are excited for the roll out of the renovation at the Hotel Nyack which is a JDV by Hyatt. We also just secured a fabulous hotel renovation on Bethany Beach, Delaware.
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: How has your creative process been modified with your WFH situation?
AJC: Not having a material library was a massive challenge as well as not having the latest and greatest materials at my fingertips. So now, I read more email blasts about product launches along with doing more product searches through Material Bank and social media outlets. All in all, I’ve learned to be creative about how I work and where I work. My dining room table and chairs are getting a lot of use, doubling as my home office.
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: I’d love to know if you find yourself stuck in the creative process, how do you reset?
AJC: I reset by taking a walk or working out. Sometimes, I just need to get a good night rest. As I have gotten older I have understood the importance of sleep to your health, productivity and resilience. Amazing what 8 hours can do for your body and mind.
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: Where do you pull inspiration?
AJC: I gather inspiration from recent as well as past travel; next, it comes from being in nature and observing texture and shadows. Finally, it comes down to social media and design books. I like to give myself the creative freedom to explore radical approaches to the design problem, so that I can be more forward and find new sparks.
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: If you weren’t an interior designer, what would you do and why?
AJC: This may surprise some but by day I would braid hair on the beach and by night I would be a bartender. Braiding would relax me and help get my 1:1 time. Bartending would provide a social and a creative outlet without having to sit all day. Being creative can be mentally exhausting and the beach is a great place to refuge and recharge.
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: If someone was traveling to NYC for the first time what restaurant would you recommend?
AJC: Hearth in the East Village. It’s a cozy, unpretentious place with amazingly fresh food. I recommend the burrata with a dirty martini, no olives, to go with!
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: Any words to live by?
AJC: Creativity is Everything! is central of course to my brand and values. It can be applied no matter what industry you work in. Aside from that, it would be to treat people with kindness. We are living in a new world of inequity, abuse, global warming, corruption and so much more. We should all remember that being kind is priceless and is what helps keep our communities and families strong.
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: What advice would you give to someone starting out in your industry?
AJC: Seek out internship opportunities at companies of various sizes either before you graduate or right after. It wasn’t until I found internships at Gensler and at Mason during my years at Pratt, that I found the type of work culture I collaborate best with and that I found my passion for hotel design. I would encourage new designers to be curious and ask questions and know that you’re not going to get your dream projects as a designer right from Day 1. It takes time to develop your niche and understand how you can best serve others!
AJC SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM: How do you describe your fashion aesthetic?
AJC: I appreciate fashion and all the ways it changes and comes back through the decades. My style is clean and tailored with a splash of color and above all, comfortable. I also love to dress-up on occasion and wear my Laboutins. But everyday, I tend to wear my Frye sneakers so I can walk around the city and run after my 4 year-old daughter.
333 East 108th St. Suite 6D
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