Beauty With a Backbone



  • Oct 5, 2017


Beauty. We spend our lives in search of it. Intoxicated, we click photos of passing sunsets as if each one is the first we’ve ever witnessed. Besotted, we gaze into the eyes of a crush as if they’re the most heavenly creature ever created. But when mere beauty comes without matter, the moment is fleeting – the sunset subsides, the flirtation fades…

Balance. Just as our lives feed off of beauty, they also ask for equilibrium. We crave the warmth of the sun just as we desire the mystery of the moon. The yin provides stability and gravitas to the yang. The graceful grounding of feng shui goes beyond product placement – it is a real-world practice to help create accord between one’s surroundings and one’s success. Even its name feng (wind) and shui (water) refer to the two natural elements that flow, move and circulate – in essence, complement each other through their individual energies.

It is in the moment when style meets substance – beauty meets balance — that lasting bonds are formed.  It’s when beauty incorporates pragmatism – a sense of purpose that enhances experience – that long-term value is revealed.

Beauty Needs Purpose

It is intrinsically understood that living among beautiful things gives life a harmony, a certain richness. Artists have embraced the importance of aesthetics to humankind for ages. Interior designers understand this concept, as well; numerous studies show that people interact and perform better in well-designed spaces. As world-renowned designer David Trubridge attests: Without beauty, there is no care.

The luxury boutique community is also a natural breeding ground for the beautiful. By fostering and furthering properties that celebrate the artistic, the authentic and the extraordinary, by definition, boutique hotels wear their good looks with distinction.

As a creative collective of not only interior designers and branding visionaries, but also consulting and procurement experts, we have found that when beautiful designs are anchored by in-depth research, careful consideration and thoughtful innovation, powerful hospitality projects emerge that enrich the guest experience and – dare we say – life itself. 

More Than Just a Pretty Face

We believe that buildings that are beautiful and have meaning and purpose elevate our experience.

Distinctive boutique properties such as Reikart House, a recently reimagined hotel in Amherst, New York, that draws its whimsical personality from its colorful namesake (a local 20th-century character known for many things, most notably his pet monkey, Jacko) marry the aesthetically pleasing with the pragmatic. Reikart House, for example, was originally designed by Duane Lyman, known as the “Dean of Western New York architecture.” By taking the bones of a well-designed building, modernizing the interiors and refreshing the brand with a healthy dose of community spirit, Reikart House was reborn.

Similarly, in Chicago’s so-hip-it-hurts Wicker Park ‘hood, The Robey took advantage of a long-neglected historical structure to become the city’s most in-demand reservation. Furnishings and fixtures fitting of the design-driven destination ensure the hotel is a favorite among locals and in-the-know visitors alike.

On the Left Coast, a revitalized Hollywood – a neighborhood that knows a thing or two about allure and the impact of a well-timed facelift – is enjoying a resurgence. Hot properties such as Dream Hotel, The Godfrey LA and the Wayfarer are using beautiful buildings and big names to bring the heat back to Hollywood.

The Law of Attraction

It’s a thrilling time to work in the boutique and lifestyle sector. Today’s guests demand hotels go well beyond a satisfactory place to rest their head. They want differentiated and desirable experiences that, in turn, create memories and build brand loyalty. This added layer of purpose builds in value by providing lasting impressions that remain with each guest long after check out.




An Australian native who now proudly calls Chicago home, Andrew is the President and Founding Partner of The Gettys Group Companies, where he has spearheaded nearly three decades of growth for this groundbreaking and award-winning global hospitality interior design, consulting,branding and procurement firm. Propelled by Andrew’s dynamic leadership style and global sensibilities, The Gettys Group Companies has grown from one office in Chicago to four offices throughout the United States, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. By leveraging Andrew’s diverse background in design, hotel operations, real estate finance and branding, The Gettys Group Companies has established a worldwide reputation for having an innovative and creative approach to the hotel design and development process. The firm has also earned rankings among the top global hospitality design and procurement firms while completing several hundred hospitality projects throughout the world. An honors graduate of the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, Andrew is a noted industry speaker who is frequently engaged to share his expertise and insight about the hospitality industry, business strategy and global trends. He is also active with a number of civic groups in his adopted hometown of Chicago.