Here we are, weeks into the surreal atmosphere that is New York City right now.
It’s difficult to remember how things were when life was normal (as if normal could ever describe our city).

Nevertheless, life does go on.

My interior design firm, Sygrove Associates Design Group, specializes in high-end renovations of the common areas of apartment buildings, meaning lobbies and hallways, in particular.

Our work creating beautiful and functional spaces has made us the premier firm in our field. Each of our finished lobby or hallway projects is the result of hundreds of micro-decisions that were made along the way. It takes up to nine months for design and constructions plans to be finalized and approved before the real work can start.

Obviously, my chosen profession is not for the faint of heart, even during normal times. Yet, despite the crisis we are experiencing, But, I’m happy to announce that numerous client projects, some which have been on hold since March, are getting ready to start-up. And we have several brand-new projects on the boards, too.

I have to believe our clients are reaching out to us during this scary time because of our reputation, high standards, and the superb work we’ve produced for over two decades.

Some clients were all ready for the preliminary design phase of their renovation to begin before the lockdown. They are now asking us to lock-in some of the terrific pricing that’s available right now. When construction begins, these projects will be ready to go, and our clients will save a considerable amount of time and money, as well.

Social distancing and personal protective equipment are going to be around for a long time, and with that in mind, we are busy innovating and adjusting to that new reality. Here are some of the ways we’re doing it:

Custom-Designed and Built Doorman Sanitation Stations

Our clients are nervous about re-opening and how their building staff can keep themselves and residents safe. With this in mind, the Sygrove team has designed something we like to call the Doorman Sanitation Station.

The Doorman Sanitation Stations make it simple for a doorman to do his job and comply with social distancing and the CDC rules. It provide everything he needs to be safe, sanitary, and protected right at his fingertips.

Here are some features of our Doorman Sanitation Stations:

  • Built-in compartments to hold all necessary sanitizing equipment such as hand-sanitizer, gloves, masks, cleaning solutions, disinfectant spray, etc. No longer will the doorman have to leave his area to retrieve supplies. The lobby won’t be left unattended, and the desk area will be neat and tidy.
  • Enclosed trash receptacle systems with open slots. The doorman won’t have to touch garbage with his hands, and garbage won’t fall on the floor, either.
  • An innovative flush groove-and-track system that’s sunk into the periphery of the desktop. It will hold a clear plexiglass protection screen that separates the doorman from residents, visitors, delivery people, contractors, and anyone who needs to converse with him. It has a slot for paperwork, shipping envelopes, etc.
  • This ingenious track-and groove system accommodates typical lobby signs such as “All Visitors Must Be Announced” and notices for residents such elevator or water shut-down announcements.

Social Distancing Is In Our Design Plans

Today, every design plan on our boards is drawn to allow for social distancing in the lounge and doorman desk areas. And, we are in the process of creating state-of-the-art storage and package delivery systems using easy-to-sanitize materials. They are placed within easy access of a doorman desk.

In the past, we didn’t worry too much about how many times an apartment door has to be opened for paint to be applied, new hardware to be installed, for a saddle to be replaced, etc. Now we are pacing the work so it can be performed faster with less worry for residents.

We're At Work Right Now!

Our teams are out in force, taking site measurements, and preparing and issuing bid packages to contractors. These kinds of design phase activities will allow us to jump in and start construction as soon as restrictions are lifted.

And, each Sygrove team member whose out in the field has been equipped with hand sanitizer, custom masks, and surgical gloves. They follow the set protocol for entering each building and are trained in CDC-approved safety measures.

What This All Means For Real Estate Prices

Real estate in the city has always been competitive and the impact of COVID-19 will be felt for months and years to come. If property values are going to tumble, why would your building choose now to update your common areas? Two reasons:

  1. When it’s a buyer’s market, your property must look as good, even better, than the other buildings on your block. It’s awful to discover that an apartment that is similar to yours in the building next door, sold fast, while yours is just sitting. That’s often the result of a shabby lobby and dingy hallways.
  2. It’s a great time to lock-in contractor pricing. We are preparing construction bid documents for many projects that won’t get started for months. Contractors in the city are hungry for work now, so if we can get bids buttoned-down now we are getting our clients some great deals.

I am proud beyond words. Sygrove Associates Design Group is weathering the crisis just fine. We are open for business, and ready to talk to you about your building… on Zoom!  |  212.757.0631

Sygrove Interior Design Services

Sygrove Associates Design Group is an NYC interior design company. Our company’s founder Marilyn Sygrove is the lead interior designer on all projects. And she’s as tough as you are when it comes to quality, aesthetics, and coming in on time and on budget.

It all starts with a design consultation with Marilyn. She takes the time to thoroughly understand your design needs then personally directs all interior design, planning, and installation activities. Her work has been delighting clients, co-op and condo boards, and homeowners for over 30 years.

You can reach Marilyn by email at or call her directly at 212.757.0631.

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