Interior Architecture Inspires Hospitality Designs by Michael Caradine
Michael Caradine is a founder and director of Adrian Caradine Contract Design Inc. with over 35 years of experience in the design and management of hospitality projects. His talents are enriched by interests in historical preservation, product design and travel. Michael is involved in every step of a design project, from concept development to unique artistic placement. The most rewarding aspect of each project is its ability to transform the client’s distinct vision into a timeless, functional space that exceeds expectations. Founded in 1996, Adrian Caradine Contract Design Inc. provides comprehensive interior design services to clients in the United States and the Caribbean, with a focus on hospitality projects. ACCD has developed restaurant brands and concepts for major hotel companies, including Hilton and IHG. The company was founded on the belief that good design is fundamental and uplifts the human spirit and can only be achieved through intellect, dedication, attention to detail, cost efficiency and superior communication. Our success is a reflection of the success of our customers.
Where did you start as a designer?
After obtaining a BFA in Interior Design, I worked for a major residential interior company. Very soon after, I was offered the opportunity to work for the largest hotel design group in the country at the time (HSD, a division of Holiday Inns which is now Intercontinental Hotels and Resorts). It was exciting to play a pivotal role in the development of brands such as Hampton Inn, Homewood Suites and Crowne Plaza.
What prompted you to start your own business?
When Holiday Inns moved to Atlanta in 1991, several accomplished designers previously employed by Holiday Inns joined to found our hotel design company, ACC Design Inc. Hotel design had become highly specialized and competitive. Hoteliers were looking for design professionals with a deep understanding of the industry, able to execute high standard designs and effectively meet their challenges.
Where does the name Adrian Caradine come from?
The name of the company was formed by combining the names of the principal directors, Debbie Adrian and Michael Caradine.
How would you describe your design style?
Each hospitality project has a unique style articulated by the client, location, market research, hotel brand (if applicable) and design team. Beyond these parameters, I avoid trends and focus on the characteristics of interior architecture. I like to collaborate with the architect of the project on every detail. It is important to achieve a harmonious balance between the interior and the architectural envelope. Difficult to create beautiful interiors in mediocre buildings! I strive to provide an eclectic mix of furniture and art. A successful interior should appear as if it has been carefully collected over time. People have become sophisticated in their knowledge of design and deserve decorative elements that excite and intrigue.
You have a background in textiles, don’t you? Can you tell us about that?
I studied textile construction and modeling while preparing for my BFA. I have always been intrigued by all aspects of textiles, especially the historical and cultural significance. I have collected vintage fabrics and tapestries for many years and have discovered amazing pieces during my travels. I have created custom rugs and fabrics for hotel projects throughout my career. One of the advantages of the large quantities required for hotels is the ability to custom design!
Can you tell us about a project that you are extremely proud of?
It’s hard to narrow down the favorites, but I’ll mention two. We have just completed a boutique hotel in New Orleans that fits into a 19th century sugar refinery, The Mercantile. Interiors reflect the history and importance of the Warehouse District, while being warm, fun and inviting. Another recently completed project, Angelena’s, is a restaurant for Food Network personality and nationally acclaimed chef James Briscione and wine expert Brooke Parkhurst. These clients are energetic, sophisticated and have traveled extensively. They envisioned an unrivaled Gulf Coast restaurant that would bring an authentic southern Italian dining experience to the southern United States. With a tight schedule and a somewhat limited budget, we exceeded their expectations.
In your opinion, are there any trends that could change the industry?
Hotel interiors are constantly evolving. While the design of the rooms remains crucial, the emphasis is on designing public spaces that appeal to discerning young professionals who aspire to authentic experiences rather than conventional environments. As a result, hotel companies are actively developing new brands to attract and connect with younger and more diverse clientele. We expect to see this trend intensify in the future as hotels strive to stay competitive.