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Remembering an Industry Icon - Cliff Tuttle

The hotel industry lost one of the biggest forces in the design community this week. Here we share some remembrances.

Friday, May 23, 2014
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We loved Cliff Tuttle. He had an amazing effect on the lodging community, and influenced so many. So we thought we would dedicate the day to remembering this iconic man memorialized by the words of the hospitality community.

Cliff was SVP at Forrest Perkins and they shared the story of his life:

“Everyone at ForrestPerkins mourns the loss and celebrates the life of our colleague and dear friend, Clifford R. Tuttle, who passed away May 20 at 11:20 PM in Houston, Texas. He was with his loving family and is survived by his brother, Philip I. Tuttle and his wife Sharon, his niece, Kelly Day, her husband Alan and their son Brooks, and his nephew Robert and his wife Leigh and their son Weston.

“An award-winning interior designer, Cliff Tuttle managed the interior design practice in the San Francisco office of luxury hotel design firm ForrestPerkins. He joined ForrestPerkins at its founding in 1998, serving briefly in the firm's Dallas office, then as Senior Vice President in charge of design for eight years in the firm's Washington, DC office, before launching the San Francisco office in 2007. Prior to joining ForrestPerkins, Cliff was president of Concept Design Group in Honolulu and Concept International Design Group in Singapore for nine years. Cliff was a graduate of Texas Tech University.

“Spanning over thirty years, Cliff's career included the design and project management of luxury hotels and resorts in the United States and Southeast Asia. His projects range from the iconic Raffles Singapore to Starwood's Luxury Collection hotels in Santiago, Chile and Portland, Oregon (The Nines). Cliff was honored with Lodging Hospitality Magazine's Designer's Circle First Place Award and Boutique Design Magazine's Best Hotel Design award for The Nines. He also served as an educator, teaching at the Honolulu Academy of Arts and the Interior Designers' Guild in Los Angeles.

“In 2009, Cliff received the prestigious NEWH (Network of Executives in Hospitality) Person of Excellence Award for his significant contribution to the design industry and to NEWH, on whose Board of Directors he served for many years. He was active throughout his career with The American Society of Interior Designers and served as the Hawaii Chapter President and the Director of Professional Development for the Washington, DC Chapter as well as on numerous national committees for the Society.

“Cliff Tuttle was a pioneer in sustainable design in the hospitality industry. He recently served as Director of NEWH Sustainable Hospitality and on the Sustainable Design Council for ASID. A LEED-Accredited Professional, he served on the Technical Advisory Group for LEED for Hospitality for the US Green Building Council. He authored numerous articles on sustainable design and was a featured speaker at many hotel industry and design events. Cliff was highly respected in the design profession for his laudable contributions to sustainable design and to mentorship of young designers as well as his untiring volunteerism on behalf of the many organizations and charitable causes about which he was passionate.

“Cliff Tuttle's impact on the hospitality industry and the design profession cannot be exaggerated. He touched countless lives and gave his enthusiastic support to each person with whom he came in contact. The lives of his clients, friends, colleagues, coworkers, industry partners and even many people whom he did not know personally are enriched. Cliff's humor, vibrant personality and generous spirit infused every interaction with joy. We at ForrestPerkins, present and past members included, have lost a dear colleague, mentor and friend. We are so fortunate to have known and loved Cliff and to have been blessed with his kindness and generosity of spirit. We will miss him more than we can express.

“Cliff's family is planning a small private service. There will be a memorial celebration in San Francisco later this summer. Details will be released soon. Remembrances can be posted on Cliff's Facebook page, ForrestPerkins' Facebook page and on the NEWH Facebook page,’ they wrote in an eblast.

Deborah Herman, owner of Fabric Innovations said: “I love you Cliff Tuttle. The hole in our hearts you leave is so difficult to process. The life you have lived, the people you have touched, the kindness you have shown, the accolades you have shades, the design you have created, the concepts you have taught, the NEWH boards you have mentored - as I told you over and over will live forever. The University of Cliff Tuttle Studies will create generations to come the precepts we love to engage our lives, our industry and our friends. We will keep your memory alive. We will welcome your family to ours and remain their family. Your are my forever friend.”

The Puccini Group also remembers Mr.Tuttle sharing this sentiment: “An inspirational leader, Cliff Tuttle has impacted countless members of the design community--both in San Francisco and across the world--over the course of his lifetime. Our hearts are with him, his family, and with our colleagues at ForrestPerkins during this difficult time. Cliff, your talent and your infectious gusto for life will leave a lasting imprint on us all. Love, Puccini Group.”

Julia Davis Marks, President at Dossee and Creative Director at Fiori Artes Design & Consulting wrote about her experience with Cliff. “Dear Cliff Tuttle, you my friend will be missed terribly by your friends and family, your industry and the world. It's an honor to have known you, to have been inspired by you and to be a part of this amazing group of people who support each other through life and beyond.”

According to the NEWH, a memorial event will be scheduled in San Francisco at a later date and a scholarship has been established to honor Cliff and his contribution to the hospitality industry. NEWH will be awarding a $5,000.00 design-based award to be presented at HD's Platinum Circle.
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