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Ace Hotel

Size of Project

192,000 SF

Number of Keys



New Orleans, LA


Carondelet Partners LLC




Historic Renovation and New Construction


Completed in 2016




A unique vibe.

Design is an idea, but it takes construction to bring it to life. The Ace Hotel brand, known for its aesthetic, offers a unique experience by infusing an eclectic menagerie of style into historic buildings. Knowing this project would need to balance historic renovation, restoration, and new construction, Domain Companies brought RNGD on board to create Ace Hotel’s iconic atmosphere on Carondelet Street. As the CM-At-Risk, RNGD was tasked with guiding the renovation of a 136,000 sq. ft. 1920s art-deco building—once a furniture store—into a 234-room landmark hotel that would change the game for boutique hospitality in New Orleans.

Heart and soul.

To modernize the old, you need to refortify it. A prominent rooftop pool and deck would sit at the top of the 9-story historic renovation. But rooftop waterside lounging wasn’t a consideration for the original 1928 design. To add the pool, the RNGD team began bracing the building from the ground up. New foundations were added along with structural steel reinforcement that ran through each floor to the roof. Within the historic renovation, our team balanced the vision of architect EskewDumezRipple+ and interior design team Roman and Williams with constructability. We worked with trade partners to integrate custom millwork and metal fabrication. The original entrance was recessed and restored with added awnings. A striking-red neon sign was installed, giving visitors their first inviting impression. Inside, a two-level “secret” music venue was built as the musical heart and soul of the hotel. Built as a structural steel addition and outfitted with both proper acoustic panels and soundproofing, this music hideaway also provides ample mezzanine-level space for additional offices.

Done unconventionally.

As a tripartite project, a new four-story building would rise in the adjacent lot next to the hotel with a connecting bridge over a 1920s garage-turned-cafe.  But the construction of the 56,000 sq. ft. addition had to be done unconventionally. Tight space and surrounding buildings ruled out the possibility of using conventional tower crane construction methods. To build the addition, the RNGD team worked with our structural engineering partners, Morphy Makofsky, Inc., to design and construct a steel podium and composite concrete deck, along with a custom, on-site fabricated, load-bearing metal stud framing system. This strategy enabled us to limit crane needs and maintain a light, cost-effective structural design. But it gave the Ace Hotel another public event space, added guest rooms, retail space, a border for the 2nd-floor courtyard, and an added boost to the block’s new trendy vibe.

No ordinary boutique hotel.

Ace Hotel New Orleans is no ordinary boutique hotel. It’s a historic building that lets itself be decadent, peculiar, and mysterious in its own way. It takes a team of builders and their unique–oftentimes weird (yes, weird)–approach to bring it to life. From restoring the historical elements that would complement the new ones, the RNGD team brought process-driven insight to building Ace Hotel’s home in the Gulf South. The result is a multi-award-winning boutique hotel that opened the door for new concepts in the New Orleans market while celebrating the “eccentric vibe” of the Crescent City.