The Marlton, a large nine-story building located in the heart of Greenwich Village in New York City, has a storied history. It has served as home to some of the most famous and influential artists and writers of the modern era, such as Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady.
Built in 1900 and purchased in 2013 by Sean MacPherson, co-owner of New York City’s Bowery Hotel, The Jane Hotel, and a bevy of other properties on both coasts, the vision for the Marlton was that of an upscale, boutique hotel. The design required keeping many of the original features, including herringbone-wood floors, intricate crown molding, and brass fixtures; however, the building had no central air conditioning system.
MacPherson and his team searched for an HVAC system that would not only preserve space but also create an atmosphere for individual guest comfort. The hotel’s management set out to establish a list of defining characteristics and settled on three main criteria for the new HVAC system. First, the system needed to be highly economical and efficient in terms of its energy consumption. Secondly, the building’s owners wanted to preserve the architectural integrity and charm of the design details while maximizing the limited space available. Lastly, the system had to provide superior occupant comfort.
The Marlton team turned to local Klima New York to design the optimal solution that would deliver on the requirements. After carefully reviewing the HVAC options, Klima specified the LG Multi V™ IV Variable VRF system. The Multi V series addressed the Marlton’s need for an energy-efficient system. With features like smart load control and active refrigerant control, energy use is optimized based on the demands of the system and accounts for changes in ambient temperature to regulate performance for efficiency and comfort.
The LG system also allows for multiple rooms to be maintained by a single outdoor unit, which not only frees up valuable wall and floor space in each room but also allows for the energy to be more efficiently distributed across the system.
In addition to the efficiency, the Multi V system worked for the Marlton because its design flexibility worked with the building’s architectural features. In the guest rooms, the returns were discretely hidden amongst the crown molding, while, in other areas, duct-free units were used to avoid having to cover up the Marlton’s ornate features with soffits for ductwork.
Additionally, the design of the LG system maximized space, which was critical. Unlike many traditional systems, which would require a mechanical room, the Multi V systems do not. This enabled the Marlton to use the space downstairs, which would have otherwise served as a mechanical room for the restaurant’s kitchen.
Similarly, the compact footprint of the outdoor units combined with their quiet operation meant that the outdoor units could reside on the roof but still allow the Marlton to use and repurpose the rest of the rooftop to create an open, airy space for guests to sun bathe, lounge, and relax.
Lastly, the zoned capabilities of the system meant the guest spaces and common areas could be independently and appropriately controlled and conditioned for occupant comfort.
The design flexibility combined with the high performance and energy efficiency of the VRF solution addressed the building’s requirements in a cost-effective manner without sacrificing comfort. For nearly the same cost as a traditional system, officials said the Marlton Hotel now has a highly reliable, energy-efficient HVAC solution that delivers comfort and conveniences for its guests.
“Our company chose VRF because as we are in downtown New York, where space is at an all-time premium, we needed to save space, and the LG VRF system allowed us to do that,” said Eric Rosenfeld, general manager at The Marlton Hotel. “I personally think the best aspect of the system is the fact that the design has been integrated with the functionality, so we didn’t lose any of the architectural integrity.”
“Besides space saving and design flexibility, efficiency is the best feature for the hotel,” said James Moran, sales engineer at Klima New York. “Generally, the LG Multi V VRF system will provide a 30-40 percent savings over conventional air conditioning systems. That return alone on a hotel and hospitality application represents quite a return on investment in a relatively short time.”