Project Spotlight

Studio PCH Brings California Cool to Universal Music Group

You’d never know acoustic perfection was top of mind for the Nobu-favorite firm, which set the scene with comfortable, free-flowing design touches for Interscope’s next generation of hit-makers.

Credit (all images): Jenna Peffley/OTTO/Studio PCH

Santa Monica is known for churning out good waves: from the surf scene to the legendary tunes eked out by musicians who flock to coastal California city for Universal Music Group’s (UMG) recording studios. Everyone from Dr. Dre and Billie Eilish to Lana Del Rey have made music at the legendary spot, so when local firm Studio PCH was asked to give the studio a refresh, founder Severine Tatangelo replied with a resounding “yes.”

In addition to renovating the highly technical studios, the French architect also recast an artist lounge and pantry in her firm’s signature take on timeless California cool. (This approach has made Nobu hotels from Malibu to Los Cabos celebrity-favorite unwinding hotspots and pop culture staples.) Case in point: floor-to-ceiling wood paneling, white oak-framed furniture, and an abundance of greenery. “It was important to keep in mind creatives and technicians would mix and mingle there,” Tatangelo says of cultivating an atmosphere of collaboration across the common areas and lounges. “Their social interaction could potentially lead to the birth of a musical masterpiece.”

Throughout, a seamless layout  helps prevent any disruption to the artists’ creative flow. “We designed comfortable, floating sofas, perfect for all-nighter recording sessions,” Tatangelo says. “Their color blends with the walls to create a continuous visual within the room.”

Below, Tatangelo shares how Studio PCH channeled three decades of record label history to craft a convivial and low-key environs where the talents of BTS, Glorilla, and Lady Gaga can truly shine

Project Description: Studio PCH was invited by UMG to rethink and refresh its legendary recording studio. The space is designed to be a perfect hangout spot where artists can interact and create in comfort. Everything was chosen specifically to enhance the mood and the music; the relaxed design coupled with state-of-the-art recording equipment is subtle, but extremely detailed. The studio was thought of as a space where artists would mix, mingle, and birth new creative ideas.

Project Inspiration: Working on a pre-existing design presented its challenges, but it helped Studio PCH channel the energy of the creative space, which is located in the inspiring city of Santa Monica. As a result, many of the design pieces pay homage to the record label’s past. Art books and one-of-a-kind items from three decades of Interscope can be seen on coffee tables and on the bar of the main room. Studio PCH worked closely with the UMG team to properly curate these items. There are a variety of pieces gathered throughout the years, from instruments to signed items to large pictures of key moments with artists. We didn’t want to create a museum, but by understanding Interscope’s vision and culture, we intensified its legacy.

Project Takeaways/Uniqueness: The UMG Recording Studio features two recording rooms, smaller writing spaces, and a larger space for performances. If each unit has a different vibe, they play together naturally and bask in the creative magic so many artists have found in California.

Project Challenges: Capturing natural light—it transforms the overall atmosphere and mood of the space. By allowing natural light to flow into the Interscope studio, artists can work in an environment that feels more open, organic, and inviting. Through careful curation by the Interscope CEO, the works of relevant artists like Lauren Halsey, Sam Durant, Sayre Gomez, and Olivia Cognet were showcased, resulting in a unique environment that inspires creativity and nurtures artistic expression.

Studio PCH is a member of The List, the destination for all things Surface -approved. Want to join The List ? Contact our team to find out how to apply.


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