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Culture

Gordon Chapel at St. Hilda’s & St. Hugh’s

The chapel's multipurpose space supports rehearsals, performances and all school gatherings

Capping two decades of planning and design work for the independent St. Hilda’s and St. Hugh’s School, MBB reimagined its multipurpose chapel to allow for more uses and flexibility and to offer a bright, uplifting experience for faculty, families and students in grades Pre-K to 8.

MBB oversaw the refurbishing and reinstallation of the chapel’s original pews and 1974 Rieger organ as the walls and ceiling were stripped to their structure and rebuilt withwhite oak paneling. Illuminated ceiling coffers, inspired by stained-glass windows, brighten the room alongside new, energy-efficient fixtures. A raised ceiling with articulated wood baffles trains ceremonial focus on the altar and the organ’s new wood case surround, set on an original raised section of the refurbished travertine marble floor.

The new chapel elevates its special significance in school life, a room used every day and for regular gatherings. Hidden audiovisual systems enhance music performances and community programs. Along with this expanded use, the school has rediscovered Gordon Chapel as a touchstone of its progressive spirit and unique legacy.

The chapel serves as the heart of the school and its wider community
The marble altar and original organ in a new wood case surround, set atop raised travertine
The original pews were refurbished and reinstalled
New lighting and warm oakwood finishes offer a luminous, uplifting experience for the community
Illuminated ceiling coffers, inspired by stained-glass windows, brighten the room and give the appearance of skylights
New display cases have been added for curated exhibits

Recognition

  • 2019 National Society of American Registered Architects Design Award
  • 2019 NY Society of American Registered ArchitectsDesign Award of Merit
  • 2019 Interior Design MagazineNYCxDESIGN Award Finalist
  • 2019 Faith & Form MagazineLiturgical/Interior Design Award