New World Center is Kick-Ass Architecture, But Performance Hall Comes Across as Tacky

NWC concert hall small.jpg
Michael E. Miller
The New World Center's performance hall
By now, it's well established that the New World Center is a pretty kick-ass piece of architecture. Frank Gehry's latest work has enchanted critics the world over with its restrained exterior and bizarrely beautiful, white-washed interior.

But are we the only ones who think the concert hall itself is... um... a little tacky?
First, there's the wood stage and staircases that, in a $160 million building, somehow manage to come across as cheap looking.

Then there's the striped white paneling that looks more like vinyl siding than new age sound insulation.

Last but not least hideous are the speckled pastel blue and sea foam-colored seats on all sides of the stage.

"They remind me of a hotel," one visitor said. Not the luxury kind, we're guessing. Even Gehry himself joked about the seats.

"When (acoustician Yasuhisa Toyota) picked the color of the seats, I was a little scared," he said during a press tour of the performance hall on Tuesday. "But they do work. You are in Miami."

We'll leave that to you to decide. Below are some pics:
NWC concert hall big.jpg

NWC seats.jpg
Their outfits and glasses scream "symphony," but the seats say "1980s stonewashed jeans."
NWC ceiling.jpg
The ceiling, at least, is nice and Gehry-esque: plain, white... sails? Whatever they are, at least they aren't speckled seafoam blue

Location Info


New World Center

500 17th St., Miami Beach, FL

Category: Music

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Holcim Awards US
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I agree those seats are not so appealing and don't fit with the architecture.

I would love to hear more about the sustainable features of the design...Check out the Holcim Awards for Sustainable Construction:


Your face is tacky.

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