At Engledow, we’re always looking for new ways to incorporate lush, beautiful plants into unique indoor environments. A project that’s been one of our favorites—and one of our most ambitious—has been the living wall at the Indianapolis Marriott East hotel.
From the outset of the building’s design, the owner and architect at Indianapolis Marriott East both knew they wanted to do something special with the lobby layout. They wanted to incorporate lots of plants into their design, but didn’t want the plants to take up too much space on the lobby floor. It was also important to them to create a plant-based focal point in the room. Out of these desires came the concept for the living wall.
The living wall is a series of trough planter boxes attached to the wall around the building’s main interior entryway. Each box is a custom length, fitting precisely into its designed space to create a perfectly symmetrical outline of the doors. Inside each planter box is a wide variety of different plants—almost 20 different kinds—that compliment each other in both size and color.
“People are totally amazed by the living wall. They’re always curious to see how it works because it’s different than anything they’ve ever seen before. On first glance, most people think the plants are actually made out of silk,” said Holly Yorgen, caretaker for the living wall.
Responses to the living wall have been overwhelmingly positive. It was even distinguished by receiving a Merit Award in the Interior Design/Build category from the Professional Landcare Network as part of their Environmental Improvement Awards Program.
The living wall isn’t just about looking great—it’s also about promoting good health throughout the Indianapolis Marriott East building.
“The living wall is constantly helping to clean the air of the Indianapolis Marriott East hotel by helping to eliminate harmful airborne chemicals that come from carpet, paint, or other surfaces. It also gives people a better attitude—they love being surrounded by green,” said Lael George, director of commercial and residential interior plantscaping for Engledow.
The advantages of the living wall are many: it doesn’t take up floor space, it’s made up of hearty plants that are easily maintained, it provides an aesthetically pleasing focal point in the lobby, and it has mental and physical health benefits. The design has been a big hit over at Indianapolis Marriott East, and we’re proud we could be part of this one-of-a-kind project.