Set within a 1908 neoclassical bank building, The Ritz-Carlton, Philadelphia draws inspiration from the city’s architecture to spotlight its rich history. When enhancing their lobby in the fall of 2019, the hotel sought to elevate the experience with a new ‘defining moment’ that would engage guests and set the hotel apart from others in the area.
Bringing Philly to the forefront of the new, modern experience, the Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia asked local design agency Oat Foundry to build a custom, nostalgic split flap display to kick off 5’o’clock happy hour next to a never-before-seen Moët champagne vending machine.
The split flap is a direct call-out to the clackity boards that once adorned Philadelphia’s transit hub, 30th Street Station. Together with the champagne vending machine, the unique experience creates an “instagrammable” moment that gives guests a unique experience that could only be had at the Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia.
At five o’clock every day, the split flap display begins to clack and change, echoing through the cavernous lobby, and alternating between relevant quotes from historical Philadelphia icons like Ben Franklin and Rocky. Every fifteen minutes from 5 o’clock to 6 o’clock, the display puts on a show, drawing guests to the sign and creating a memorable experience that could not be had at any other hotel.
The split-flap sits across from the machine near the elevator bank – showcasing clever messages that encourage guests to take advantage of the champagne offering.
“Hotels face a lot of competition, and experiences like this help them stand out,” said Oat Foundry CEO & Co-Founder Mark D. Kuhn IV. “The Ritz-Carlton, Philadelphia’s new defining moment perfectly captures the brand and the city: it’s fun, innovative, and steeped in history. Most of all, it’s guaranteed to engage anyone who steps into the lobby.”
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