Chaos. Uncertainty. Hope. Many on the Island still remember September 20th with whirlwind emotions after Hurricane Maria. For those less fortunate, the horror of the natural phenomenon still looms near, but many in Puerto Rico have become stronger after the event. Many businesses are thriving, organizations locally and abroad are optimistic about the future, and the community has truly come together. As we look back at the first seven months after the fact, we at V Architecture can’t help but feel deep appreciation – not only for the support of our clients and partners, but also for the resilience and determination of our awesome team.
Immediately after the hurricane, restless nights scrambling to regain normality, power blackouts, and adverse conditions throughout the Metro Area and beyond made it difficult for us to operate smoothly, but our team never lost focus and its hunger to help rebuild Puerto Rico. In light of the destruction came new opportunities, as our clients and partners quickly sprung into action to regroup, rebuild and thrive.
For instance, we have undertaken a significant rehabilitation of the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino. Right in the heart of our tourism zone, this high-profile property in Condado was hit hard by hurricane winds and our team of experts was called in to bring back its seaside charm. We are rebuilding the exterior landscaping as well as replacing the finishes, fixtures, and equipment of guestrooms. Additionally, we are helping to renovate their main tower, ballroom and pre-function areas, as well as the casino and their restaurant.
Another great project in the works is the Caribe Hilton rehabilitation, and we are proud to be a part of the revamping process of such a hallmark hospitality venue in Puerto Rico. The V Architecture team together with the interior designers are helping rebuild all the guestroom finishes, fixtures and equipment in the main building, their tower and garden wing. We were also assigned to work alongside hotel management to bring the Spa and Fitness Center building back to their original splendor.
We have also been entrusted with the exciting task of designing a new state-of-the-art healthcare facility in San Lorenzo with our clients COSSMA. The sleek new building and intelligent design for the property set a sharp contrast to the destruction left behind, and symbolize a new and exciting beginning for patients of the center. Neighbors and other patrons will be elated to see the reenvisioned installations, which will inject new life into a place devastated by the path of the Hurricane deep in the mountainous region of the island.
Meanwhile, our longtime partners and friends from El Meson undertook several renovations. After the catastrophic event, their Mayaguez Western Plaza location was busy with their own relief efforts for victims in the area. As part of an impressive relief campaign, the chain delivered over 100,000 bottles of water, 40,000 food and personal care items, and more than 15,000 sandwiches to help bring hope to citizens across the island. We were proud to pitch in with our renovation plans for the Mayaguez Western Plaza restaurant, as we stumbled upon some very particular challenges. As an example, because we had no power at our office, our team of designers had to make all renderings and architectural plans by hand, sometimes getting caught in the darkness of night. Still, the properties have become new versions of their charming, signature venues and the client continues to grow their business in and out of the island.
V Architecture has many other exciting projects on the horizon, from old and new clients who keep an optimistic outlook and – as is our team – are very excited about the future. We are immensely proud to be a small part of the reconstruction of the Island and thank our partners in these ambitious ventures for keeping hope alive for our people. We thank you for letting V be part of it.