Virgin Atlantic is scaling up, moving their JFK Clubhouse to a larger, more convenient location; their previous space was designed by SHoP Architects. Designers James and Hayes Slade sought to transform an empty box flanked by curtain windows on two sides into a refuge for weary travelers with a variety of needs. Slade described creating a clear and iconic gesture through the space. The “rhythm cloud,” as he describes it, “provides visual presence within the glass box, the void within the building,” while offering “an intuitive arrangement of uses.” The cloud is defined by a ribbon screen made up of rods, undulating to create a variety of spaces in its pockets, including recreation, lounge, and private zones. Massive custom-made banquettes, and an Austin-Powers-style red bubble sofa enliven the entertainment zone, with moveable seating scattered throughout to provide configurations at many scales.
The options in seating continue with communal seating adjacent to the restaurant and private, wool-lined, alcove seats for travelers needing more private workspace. This quiet area is shielded from the bar by fins attached to the ribbon screen at varying heights, imitating the Manhattan skyline.