• Featured,  Form,  Print Edition

    Eclectic flavor

    In Downtown Detroit, a city known for its community of designers, industrialists, creatives, and culinary artists, this adaptive reuse of a 1940s-designed Art Deco Streamline Moderne building near Woodward Avenue along Parker’s Alley is a thoughtful curation of the old and the new. Realized by a collaborative design, build, and creative team led by the award-winning firm of McIntosh Poris Associates Inc. in Birmingham, Michigan for clients Holly McClain and Shawn McClain, renowned restauranteurs and hospitality leaders, Olin Bar & Kitchen breathes rich, eclectic life and depth throughout its roughly 3,900-square-foot main level. It is a concept where buried architectural origin, and the seasonal, flavorful ingredients inherent to both Michigan…

  • Design Spotlight,  Featured,  Print Edition

    Kemba Braynon, AIA, NOMA

    Senior Architect Quinn Evans | Ann Arbor, Michigan   Stories are often a powerful tool and intangible link of past, present, and future. They speak to the collective cultural memory as well as the personal, and the preservation of which can often leave an influential echo in the minds of those who come long after they have been written. In architecture, stories and narratives can be found in each building and every space within the built and natural landscape in an often visual and tactile form—or in the intentional use of the abstract space; from architectural vernacular, exterior stylistic dialect, and interior design language, to its surrounding context, and the…

  • Design Spotlight,  Featured,  Print Edition


    In the redevelopment of a historic and lakefront treasure on the western edge of Lake Michigan, Navy Pier Inc. unveiled a bold, comprehensive plan that repositioned Chicago’s Navy Pier as an ever-evolving “People’s Pier” for the 21st century and re-envisioned the landmark as an iconic destination and vibrant civic space. It called for the renovation and enhancement of existing structures and green spaces, a new strategic direction for the venue as it entered its second century, and a re-imagining of its hospitality scene that has led to the design-and-build of its first boutique hotel and a Guinness World RecordsTM title for the world’s largest rooftop bar. Known as Offshore, Navy…

  • GLBD - Private Residence | Seven Generations Architecture and Engineering LLC
    Design Spotlight,  Featured,  Print Edition

    Designed for generations

    From a collaborative, interactive design approach transforming architecture at the speed of ideas, to its status as a Tribally-Owned, 8(a) and HUBZone certified, and Small Disadvantaged Business, Seven Generations Architecture and Engineering LLC is a unique business in its small hometown of Kalamazoo and state of Michigan. The firm was founded in 2012 by Mno-Bmadsen, the independent, non-gaming investment arm of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi, and has since more than tripled in size and expanded into a headquarters in Kalamazoo’s historic River’s Edge District, on the ancestral, traditional, and contemporary lands of the Anishinabek. So far, the Seven Generations portfolio includes multi-million-dollar contracts in federal, state, municipal, commercial, and…

  • cook county hospital exterior, credit Mike Schwartz Photography
    Featured,  Form

    Cook County Hospital(ity)

    In the Illinois Medical District on Chicago’s West Side, Harrison Square, a new micro-neighborhood is being formed that will add residential, office, and retail and hotel space to the immediate surrounding area. One transformative project in the heart of the development oversaw the restoration of an eight-story iconic building with a distinctive Beaux-Arts façade that led to a 2020 Landmarks Illinois Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Preservation Award for Adaptive Use. Decommissioned in 2002 and vacant for more than 15 years, the sprawling old Cook County Hospital has been converted into a dual-brand Hyatt House and Hyatt Place Hotel, alongside other relevant additions to the area.   The historic rehabilitation project…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured,  Form

    Preservation by design

    Detroit’s architectural fabric is rich with unique historical structures—some recognizable, others more discreet—that have continually been re-purposed for the modern-day city. They also double as keenly protected sites for historic conservationists, one of which was recently recognized by both the Michigan chapter of the AIA and Michigan Historic Preservation Network for its sensitive design and rehabilitation of two historic buildings located in Detroit’s Corktown and the Greektown neighborhood areas. The firm, McIntosh Poris Associates, is an integral full-service architecture and design force for historic building preservation in Detroit and other areas of service. Since its founding in 1994, McIntosh Poris Associates, based in Birmingham, Michigan, has garnered more than 100…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Historic drive

    In Harbor Springs, Michigan, an unassuming garage exterior holds a microcosm of active space within for a lifetime collection of automotive experience and memorabilia. Historic artifacts and refurbished cars from different eras in the automotive industry weave together a unique and personal account of its heritage. Inside, a lounge, office, curated showroom, garage, and workspace converge into a project that was as rewarding to complete as it was to design. In its surroundings, the approximately 5,000-square-foot garage is described as “urban camo” by its architect, Elaine Keiser, AIA, NCARB, of Elaine Keiser Architect Inc. in Petoskey Michigan. Keiser and her team have built a sweeping portfolio of retail and restaurant…

  • Featured,  Form

    Timeless estate

    Upon approach, the French Chateau-inspired residence in Hinsdale, Illinois captures a certain je ne sais quoi in time. Beyond a set of restored, original 1926 iron gates and stone columns detailed with welcoming, ornamental pineapples, a long drive draws the onlooker down a path lined with statuesque trees to a front courtyard where an approximately 14,500-square-foot estate stands in warm grandeur.  There is a commanding romanticism to its winged exterior defined by brick and stone, arched entries, and dramatic rooflines; and a classic take on its transitional interior where English antiques are set against a light palette. Once the site of an estate designed by R. Harold Zook, an early…

  • Design Spotlight,  Featured,  Photography,  Print Edition

    Behind the camera:
    James Haefner Photography

    Photography has been an important tool in documenting the human experience since early experiments in the heliograph and daguerreotype captivated both innovator and subject alike nearly two centuries ago. It is an art and practice in visual communication; both objective and subjective in recording the cultural, social, and natural world.  It is a craft that is arguably one of the most significant inventions since the printing press, with genres and artistic styles that run the gamut from objective photo-journalism and montage portraiture to abstract landscapes and naturalistic architecture.  Great Lakes By Design Magazine spoke with some of the photographers in the region to learn more about their work, inspiration, and…