Homewood Suites by Hilton

Brookline, MA

Designers faced a key challenge in designing the Homewood Suites by Hilton in Brookline, Massachusetts: the Brookline Zoning By-Law had height restrictions limiting floor-to-ceiling heights for the five-story all-suites hotel. The solution proved to be the use of precast hollowcore concrete for the ceiling/floor units.

The city’s Zoning By-Law included a “sky plane” designed to prevent new structures from blocking views from existing buildings or casting them into perpetual shade. “Our preliminary study with the contractor during the design phase focused on creating the tightest building possible,” says Jim Pitts, a partner at Group One, the architectural firm on the project. “We found the best option was hollowcore.

The hotel bills itself as offering “like-home comforts” in a transit-friendly environment in the downtown area. The façade was designed to be welcoming and upscale, with transitions from masonry, glass, and composite panels. It also offers an artful array of earth-toned clapboard, gardens, terraces with year-round planting areas, and a swimming pool.

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Projects details

  • PrecasterJ.P. Carrara and Sons Inc., Middlebury, VT

  • OwnerClaremont Cos., Bridgewater, MA

  • ArchitectGroup One Partners Inc., Boston, MA

  • Structural EngineerGoldstein-Milano LLC, Reading, MA

  • ContractorTocci Building Cos., Woburn, MA


  • 664 pieces of precast concrete hollowcore (8 inches thick and 8 feet wide, and 18 to 25 feet long)

  • 100,000 square feet of hollowcore in all

  • 101,996 (hotel)

  • 100,000 (hollowcore plank)

  • Levels/Floors: five-story