Before attending UCLA’s Master of Architecture program in 1976, Stephen worked in think tanks and had studied environmental psychology and sociology at university and in practice.  Over the course of his architectural career, he has been fascinated by the strong connections between place and personal enjoyment and satisfaction.  His lifelong fascination with hotels began with his UCLA thesis:  a hotel that used local architectural and cultural history and abstracted architectural and landscape forms to illuminate the nature of that place.

In creating HotelStudio with his partner Mendy Winkler, Perkins seeks to restore place as an important consideration in the design of hotels and resorts.  The design opportunity in hospitality is to present the itinerant guest with an environment that is exciting without creating unease, clever without being arch, amusing and in good taste, and sophisticated in its attempt to offer accessible aspiration.  Most of all, the guest should understand the inextricable link between the locality and the design of the hotel’s interior architecture and design.

Stephen’s thirty-seven years of international design and design management experience have crossed broad cultural divides, and diversely, for luxury hotels and resorts, as well as multifamily, corporate and government work. He has served GSA as a Peer Professional in the federal government’s Design Excellence program and has advised thirteen state Governors on urban policy for the 1992 Commission on the Future of the South, and for a few years with Ernst&Young in the development, for the Department of Defense, of an approach to the privatization of military family housing.

Stephen co-founded ForrestPerkins in 1998 and shared leadership of the firm’s international architecture and interior design practice from Washington, D.C. Notable projects include the Jefferson Hotel in Washington, D.C., The Fairmont Hamilton Princess in Bermuda, La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, California, The Nines in Portland, Oregon, the Fairmont in Boston, The Alluvian in Greenwood, Mississippi, and the Marriott and Hilton hotels in Makkah, Saudi Arabia and the master plan for the doubling of Tokyo Disneyland.

In 2004, Stephen was inducted into Platinum Circle, the hospitality design industry’s highest honor, and in 2007, in recognition of his analysis of the upper upscale and luxury segments for CAPEX 2007 was admitted to the International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC).

Stephen received his Master of Architecture from UCLA and worked in the offices of AIA Gold Medalists Michael Graves, FAIA and Charles W. Moore, FAIA. He also worked with Allen Eskew at Perez Associates Architects in New Orleans, Projects Pacific in Palo Alto and Honolulu, and served as Director of Architecture in Gensler’s Washington, D.C. office prior to founding ForrestPerkins in 1998.



  • Harpeth Square Hotel, Curio: Franklin, TN

  • Armitage, An Urban Resort: Richmond, VA



  • The Alluvian Hotel: Greenwood, MS

  • Blackberry Farm Master Plan: Walland, TN

  • The Brown Palace Hotel: Denver, CO

  • Carmel Valley Ranch: Carmel, CA

  • The Fairmont Battery Wharf: Boston, MA

  • The Fairmont Hamilton Princess: Hamilton, Bermuda

  • The Fairmont Royal York: Toronto, Ontario

  • The Hermitage Hotel: Nashville, TN

  • The Hilton San Francisco: San Francisco, CA

  • The Hilton Washington: Washington, DC

  • The Hilton Suites: Makkah, Saudi Arabia

  • Hyatt Regency Princeton: Princeton, NJ

  • InterContinental The Barclay: New York, NY

  • The Jefferson Hotel: Richmond, VA

  • The Jefferson Hotel: Washington, DC

  • JW Marriott Hotel and Residences: Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

  • JW Marriott: Washington, DC

  • Omni LaCosta Resort and Spa: Carlsbad, CA

  • Marriott Suites: Makkah, Saudi Arabia

  • Marriott Marquis: New York, NY

  • Morrison-Clark Hotel: Washington, DC

  • The Nines: Portland, OR

  • The Palmer House Hilton: Chicago, IL

  • Renaissance Grand Hotel: St. Louis, MO

  • Renaissance Suites: St. Louis, MO

  • Renaissance Arlington Capitol View: Arlington, VA

  • Renaissance Providence: Providence, RI

  • Ritz Carlton Club and Residences: San Francisco, CA

  • RitzCarlton Marina del Rey: Los Angeles, CA

  • Ritz Carlton Tysons Corner: Fairfax, VA

  • Ritz Carlton Pentagon City: Arlington, VA

  • Rosewood Athens: Athens, Greece

  • Salamander Resort and Spa: Middleburg, VA

  • San Cristobal Tower: Santiago, Chile

  • St. Regis Amman and Residences: Amman, Jordan

  • Washington Plaza Hotel: Washington, DC

  • Westfields Marriott: Fairfax, VA

  • Westin Annapolis: Annapolis, MD

  • Westin Arlington: Ballston, VA

  • Westin Beach Resort: Ft. Lauderdale, FL

  • Westin Bethesda: Bethesda, MD

  • Westin Reston: Reston, VA

  • Willard InterContinental Hotel: Washington, DC




  • The Acadia at Metropolitan Park: Arlington, VA

  • Bethesda Center North: North Bethesda, MD

  • Crystal City Post Office: Crystal City, VA  

  • The Darcy Condominiums: Bethesda, MD

  • Dumbarton Place: Washington, DC

  • The Flats: Washington, DC

  • Half Street Apartments: Washington, DC

  • The Heritage at Blueback Square: Hartford, CT

  • The Metropolitan: Pentagon City, VA

  • The Metropolitan: Reston Town Ctr, Reston VA

  • Midtown: Reston Town Center: Reston, VA

  • Midtown Lofts: Reston, VA

  • The Millenium at Metropolitan Park: Arlington, VA

  • Monroe Street Condominiums: Arlington, VA

  • Ritz-Carlton Club and Residences: San Francisco, CA

  • The Roosevelt: Washington, DC

  • St. Regis Amman Residences: Amman, Jordan

  • The Watergate: Washington, DC

  • West End 25: Washington, DC

  • 450 K Street Apartments: Washington, DC



  • Deer Island Lodge Master Plan: Biloxi, MS

  • Tokyo Disneyland: Maihama, Japan

  • Punta Gorda Inner Harbor Hotel: Punta Gorda, FL



  • Hilton New Orleans: New Orleans, LA

  • InterContinetal Hotel: New Orleans, LA

  • Le Meridien Hotel: New Orleans, LA

  • Natchez Eola Hotel: Natchez, MS

  • Piazza d’Italia Hotel: New Orleans, LA

  • Radisson Sugarhouse Hotel: New Orleans, LA

  • St. Louis Hotel: New Orleans, LA