Creating a Design that is Dynamic like the Desert
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Creating a Design that is Dynamic like the Desert

Last year on February 19, Desert Diamond West Valley Casino held its official opening. The highly anticipated casino is so large that it has1.2 million-square-foot, which was filled with guests eager to experience the next phase of the Tohono O’odham Nation vision of entertainment in Glendale, Arizona.

Who Designed It?
The casino was designed by the top 5 hospitality designers from the US, the HBG Design. They have created the casino to be bold and have sophisticated aesthetics for exterior and interior, including the 75.000-square-foot casino floor. Entertainment development also has five uniquely designed restaurants and two eye-catching feature bars, the Edge Bar and the two-story Rock Bar. The designs of the bars are derived from the distinctive Sonoran Desert.

The building is located in the heart of the bustling Westgate entertainment and sports district on the Phoenix Metro area’s west side. The new Desert Diamond West Valley Casino creates a synergy with the surrounding entertainment options where it delivers a unique experience for regional gaming patrons.

The Interpretation of Dynamic Earth
The casino’s design inspiration is derived from the concept of “The Dynamic Earth, “ a unique interpretation of the desert’s abundance, a practical option for the Tohono O’odham Nation. The HBG Design team took a holistic approach to architecture, interior design, lighting and landscaping centred on the concept that belongs to The Dynamic Earth to produce meaningful and integrated guest experiences. The design draws inspiration from the characteristics of the desert. The desert in Arizona gives a unique experience, the life and breath of the desert’s weather, the ever-changing light and shadow of the sky, the solidity and sculptural elements of the land.

Emily Marshall, IIDA, NCIDQ, interior design director and associate at HBG Design, said that the project was challenging because they had to create a concept based on the desert. It was also needed to translate that concept into a design that could be vocabulary appropriate for this high-end gaming resort. The driving idea of the resort is The Dynamic Earth, and it was inspired by the life and energy of the desert. The designers were able to develop unique interpretations for multiple F&B venues, the casino floor, VIP spaces, public spaces and future phases. Emily Marshall also said that to achieve design cohesion, it’s all about the details. They created a pull of design nuances where they’ve put together individual stories, which yielded a consistency that spoke to the resort brand and well-defined guest experience.

The Effects of the Desert
The examples of this approach are numerous throughout the project. The casino has an arching roofline, which is also its signature, and it is visible from adjacent Interstate 101. The architecture creates a beautiful contrast against the light and shadow of the sky. The curved roof integrates LED lighting to mimic the ever-changing desert sky. The interior has windows that allow the sunlight to filter inside and bounce around the coloured wall panels. This light dance is further amplified by providing glimpses to sun angles at every time of the day. The hues of the interior colour palette are changing from left to right within a day when the sun dial changes, just like the path of the desert light that moved from dawn until dusk.

The resort has a casual-dining place called Fortune cafe, and the 182-sea facility has a light and shadow balance which creates intimate dining areas. Designers added dimension where they layered the dark exposed ceiling with an open-slat wooden ceiling plane. Contemporary pendants scattered throughout the space provided an abundance of light. Meanwhile, the private banquettes and patterned screening produce contrasting shadows, leading to a more multi-dimensional dining experience. Besides, the cafe also has a 46-seat terrace that adds sunlit outdoor dining.

The resort also has a steakhouse called Ninteed 86 Steakhouse, and the shapes and forms collide in the 99-seat design, just like the desert wind that flows through the sky and sculpts the elements of the landscape. There is a balance of warm and cool tone finishes. The materials are in neutral shades that turn the tempestuous silhouettes into an elegant backdrop for the resort’s fine dining.

In Conclusion
The entertainment centre is located in the heart of the bustling entertainment and sports district of the Phoenix Metro area. The core concept of the Desert Diamond West Valley Casino is to offer a truly unique entertainment experience. HBG Design has completed a master plan of the large casino where development was implemented in phases. For example, phase one was completed in 2015 and phase two in 2020, respectively.

Phase one was the casino resort plan, and in gaming options, the casino is offering an entire Class 2 gaming experience with 1089 gaming machines, an edge bar, and the 75-seat food court. Visually the casino has the exterior tone of a contemporary palette of cool- earthy green tones with white tiled accents that formed the centrepiece to the multi-hued stone at column and base.

Phase two of the resort opened in 2020, and for phase one, a transitional nature was planned. Designers used an abundance of sustainable materials and recycled materials. The paint was also used instead of typical vinyl wall covering. Phase two continued with the Dynamic Earth’s design palette, with a two-story centre bar, with the lounge being highlighted.

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