There is a rickety elevator to take people to the various levels, but while it is a hefty climb to reach the lobby, many guests prefer that becuase of the many interesting stops along the winding staircase. Every few flights of stairs is not only another breathtaking view of the surrounding wilderness, but tiny kiosks have been stocked with drinks and snacks. At one level about halfway up there is even a small and intimate lounge.
The first part of this treehouse was Cafe Mena, was one of my earliest projects. Here is what it looked like:
All aspects of the treehouse are built in 1/24 scale. You can get a sense of the scale in this photo:
Guests arrive either by stairs (left rear) or elevator (not shown). After check-in, guests ascend the stairs or take the elevator to the higher levels where the rooms are located.
|Lobby interior view. Trunks made by Sae Nakagawa|
The stairs leading to the upper level and beyond. After check-in, guests often linger in the garden-like atmosphere of the treehouse lobby, 60 feet above ground level, before retiring to their rooms, still further upward.
The borzoi sleeping by the fire (and that does flicker, there is a video you can see), was made by the great Lucy Maloney.
The rusty water bucket collects water from various rusty drain pipes.
The "Lobby" features multiple circuits allowing the viewer to control the lighting. In this case, only the "drain pipe" light is on.
In the above photo, only the "garden" lights are on, all other lights are off. Below, it is late evening. The lobby lights are all off, and everyone has retired. But the borzoi, who considers it his main job to keep watch over the lobby, remains.
This will be on display at Chicago International on April 11, 2014.