Frameless showers provide views, style at Loews Hotel and Condos

"It truly becomes one space when peering through the interior of a solar reflective insulating unit while showering and viewing the massive skyscrapers throughout the city. ... Each [shower unit] was beautifully designed by utilizing specific materials and different textures to define the room and visually move you while taking full advantage of the view."—Kristi Watson, Echols Glass & Mirror Inc.

The basics: Located in the heart of Atlanta, the Loews Hotel and Condos, a 2.1 million-square-foot mixed use development, includes a 40-story office tower and a 38-story hotel/condo tower, with ample glass inside and out, maximizing views. The complex is enclosed in floor-to-ceiling glass walls, and the interior features about 500 custom frameless shower enclosures and all-glass entrance doors and partitions. "The architect wanted a design that would highlight the frameless look and still be safe," Watson said. The project team faced a tight schedule, according to Mike Foushee, senior project manager, Brasfield and Gorrie, the general contractor for the project. "[Echols Glass'] ability to deliver and install enclosures roughly five to six working days after field measurements had been taken was ... one of the factors which enabled us to maintain the aggressive construction schedule."

The players: Architect/interior design, Rule Joy Trammell + Rubio, Atlanta; general contractor, Brasfield and Gorrie, Birmingham, Ala.; glass manufacturer, Guardian Industries Corp., Auburn Hills, Mich.; glass fabricator, installer, Echols Glass & Mirror Inc., Buford, Ga.; hardware, C.R. Laurence Co., Los Angeles.

The glass and systems: 493 total heavy glass frameless shower units of 3/8-inch thick clear tempered glass—336 door/panel/return and 55 door/panel units in the hotel; 51 door/panel/return (one with two doors) and 51 door/panel units in the condo. The hotel units were 72-inches tall, and the condo units were 80-inches tall. C.R. Laurence produced a specially designed handle by the architect for the hotel units. The condo units feature crescent shaped back to back handles. All hardware featured chrome finish to match the chrome throughout the suite. The entrance doors and partitions were all-glass, low-iron, laminated.