1M Lounge, Masonic Temple, Detroit

Photography: Martin Vecchio Photography

In the historic Detroit Masonic Temple, built between 1920-1926 –the largest and oldest Masonic temple in the world–the 1M Lounge (including rear vestibule and bathrooms) was given a dramatic and dynamic update. Breathing new life into these spaces provides important new rental opportunities for a wide range of events. In order to preserve important historic elements, we refinished the existing hardwood floor and original wainscoting. We selected new paint from Sherwin Williams’ historical colors with the specific intention of lightening up the space and giving it a warm glow. New ceiling medallions with coordinating rope detail were added, and rosettes were painted in a custom bronze finish. Because old cornice boards ran straight across the windows, cutting off the tops of arches, we added 22’ cornice boards with beautiful gothic arches — a decision that outlines the windows and provides a sense of drama. We designed and commissioned cornices and drapery panels using a traditional, heavy damask fabric by JF Fabrics from Scalamandre. Every detail was considered: we added a playful contrast border around the cornice boards in a sage green velvet by Kravet, and the leading panel edge is a hammered braid trim tape in Aged Ore by Kravet. Delicate, light-defraying gold sheers from Kravet hang just above the enclosed radiators in order to showcase the beautifully restored woodwork. 

New chandeliers and sconces from Framburg were matched as closely as possible to the original chandeliers and sconces designed by Sterling Bronze Company, and replaced existing fluorescent lights. In the bathroom, updates include drop ceiling removal, new paint, period-appropriate Schoolhouse light fixtures, new sheers, custom vanity counter and mirror made out of quarter sawn oak — all designed to allow the incredible original marble and flooring to pop.