RODE Architects Announces Completion of First Cambria Hotel in Massachusetts


BOSTON – RODE Architects announced the completion of Cambria Hotel Boston, Downtown-South Boston at 6 West Broadway.

Located in historic South Boston, the hotel’s architecture and design pay homage to its surrounding neighborhood, and bring 159 upscale rooms to one of Boston’s most vibrant communities. In addition, the hotel features a rooftop restaurant with unobstructed views of Downtown, Back Bay, Dorchester, South Boston, Seaport and the Harbor; a lobby lounge; a 160-person event space; and fitness center.

RODE was the architect for the full exterior, rooftop bar, and all elements of the interior design – lobby, event space, guest rooms, and more. In designing the new Cambria, RODE worked to curate a sophisticated, Boston-specific character, referencing the architectural language of South Boston and the Fort Point with concrete, brick, and wood textures, then layering on references to the region’s iconic natural seasons and its rich contributions to literature and academia.

Light and nature appear as engaging, active elements applied in a simple, refined palette of high-contrast shadows traced over solid forms and accented by jewel-tone emerald greens. The personality of New England is represented by the occasional touch of an inspirational quote or reading-room-inspired fixture, establishing an intellectual presence that connects to history and inspires travelers.

“We’ve been living and working in this neighborhood for 15 years and are excited to see this hotel reach completion,” said Kevin S. Deabler, AIA, LEED-AP, Principal & Co-Founder of RODE Architects. “Cambria Hotel Downtown-South Boston highlights our firm’s ability to develop and bring concept to life through a cohesive exterior and interior design while respecting the surrounding neighborhood. We are excited to continue building our portfolio of projects that add vitality to our city.”

Based on a concept design by Minneapolis-based VJAA, the hotel embraces the drama of the bustling streetscape at its front door. The form of the building reflects Boston’s irregular street grid with folding planes and geometries that spotlight the surrounding urban bustle. RODE’s design features floor-to-ceiling glass curtainwall throughout the main public spaces of the hotel, and stone flooring in the lobby and at the sidewalk draws a visual continuity between interior and exterior spaces. The energy of the public realm connects with the adjacent lobby of 14West, a 49-unit condominium building also designed by RODE.

Key features in the building’s interior include custom collaborations resulting in two unique installations. RODE collaborated with London-based artist Simon Heijdens to bring his Lightweeds installation of light-projected tree-forms to the hotel’s common spaces, providing an interactive experience for guests that replicates each of Boston’s distinct seasons. Additionally, RODE collaborated with Yellow Goat Design to create a custom chandelier, which was inspired by the weeping willows of Boston’s Public Garden. The chandelier has more than 1,200 leaf ‘elements’ suspended from a 16-foot-long armature, hanging 16-feet-high against the glass curtainwall of the lobby.

Additional custom design elements include:

  • A corridor carpet that presents the twisting silhouetted lines of tree branches, which transitions to the dappled light of a leafy canopy in the guest rooms
  • Rooms featuring an integrated bed and nightstand, with leather-binding and brass detailing, and substantial bathroom vanities
  • Millwork components that cater to the “modern traveler” with a simple, clean, and open design
  • Charred-wood wall finishing and a felt wall in the lobby to evoke the notion of academia
  • Brass finishing on shelving and the lounge back bar
  • Light fixtures inspired by reading room task lighting

The hotel sits directly across from a public transportation stop along the MBTA’s red line, which provides guests with easy access to all the main attractions of Boston and Cambridge. The hotel is positioned to frame a prominent gateway into South Boston, and is a hallmark of that neighborhood’s elevated position as an economic and cultural engine for the region.

“The building taps into the architectural language of the Fort Point neighborhood, leading to simple but confident moves in familiar concrete, brick, and wood beam textures,” said Jessica Haley, Associate, Head of Interiors at RODE Architects. “By giving unique twists to established designs, the hotel fits in harmony, while also giving a new architectural flare to the neighborhood.”

Amid the completion of Cambria Hotel Boston, Downtown-South Boston, RODE is currently working on more than six projects in South Boston, ten in Dorchester, five restaurants and many other mixed-use buildings throughout the Boston area.