Featured Project: Mint

Following reincarnation as a nightclub, finally closed down, decrepit in every way, the building was rescued from demolition and restored for new commercial use.  A pair of seasoned fitness club operators leased the entire second floor and called upon us to take advantage of its shape and features.

Swipe the photo to slide between the before and after images.

The fitness club program includes two main parts: wide-open highly public group activity space, and enclosed, private, personal spaces in a cluster.  The elongated site afforded the opportunity to divide the space and bring along a central pathway.  On one hand lies the urban grid of passages, locker rooms, service rooms, and highly private spa and personal service rooms, while on the other lies the “jumble” of exercise equipment, mats and beyond that the expanse of the outdoors.  In the tightly laid out “urban” spaces, lowered ceilings conceal the machines and pipes necessary to the function and comfort of the space, while in the open exercise spaces the steel-pan-formed concrete joists and deck, along with all HVAC ducting and lighting are fully in view.  The enclosed private spaces are clustered along the nearly totally solid alley wall, while the open group activity spaces view out to the west, north, east and (through the snub nose) south.

Snaps from our Client:

"As business owners in the city of Washington we wanted an architect who could take us all the way from concept design to finished product. We wanted style and grace in the design of our family - oriented fitness center...but we also wanted a focus on 'cost and completion'! We found everything we were looking for in Darrel Rippeteau and Annica Biegler of Rippeteau Architects, PC. They helped us evaluate alternative approaches to our program and its relationship to available lease spaces. Annica led us through the analysis process, which resulted in an exciting spatial layout taking full advantage of an industrial floor in a converted building. Rippeteau's design is luminous and a fun place for human interaction. But what really impressed us was their focus on how to put in the plumbing! They are great up front and behind the scenes!

Both Darrel and Annica were so focused and dedicated throughout our project -truly available at the most difficult of times to help troubleshoot construction building issues, and to patiently provide us with the information we needed to made a good decision. We are so proud of the end result. Our space is beautiful and functional, and we couldn't be happier with it!"

-Patrick & Melissa John

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