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Our collaboration with 9 Academy, a new hospitality concept

Salisbury, CT is a bucolic town about 100 miles due north of New York City, surrounded by pastoral landscape, quaint villages, and in the foothills of the iconic Berkshires. It is also home to the beautifully appointed 9 Academy – a new bespoke guesthouse that has the design details of a high-end boutique hotel, and the amenities of a home – including FORM kitchens and bathrooms. Read more about the stunning retreat and the story behind these special spaces.

Michael Quinn

December 1, 2023

Charles Teti and Aidan Cassidy have backgrounds in high-end fashion and residential interiors, and they’ve always dreamt of a project that would showcase their talents and become an integral part of the New England village they love. When they saw the rustic building that occupied the namesake address, they knew it was the perfect canvas for their vision. 

“What we wanted to do was not just another hotel. Our idea was to take the features of a really nice, small boutique hotel, add in high-end furnishings, provide luxurious amenities, and most importantly have it feel as though it was your own home. We also wanted to make these units spacious, so that people could travel as a group. And we wanted to have fully functional kitchens so you could really settle into your stay and make it feel like yours.”

From a design perspective, they wanted to establish a brand that felt unique. Most local hospitality veers towards the traditional and expectedly so. That’s why they intentionally moved towards a soft modern feel to the units preserving the clean lines with lots of natural light. But they didn’t want a “hard-edge contemporary look,” so they consciously worked with softer rustic elements, including bleached oak on walls and floors, raw plaster walls and undyed linen fabrics.


“We wanted to clearly telegraph that this is the country, you're here for the weekend, you know you are in the place that you're in – so the natural colors and natural materials were important. But we wanted it to have a distinctly current vibe, which is not as common in New England  villages.”

“When it came to the kitchens, we were adamant that we did not want to close in spaces with a lot of walls. That was a real design decision that we made very early on, we wanted to keep these as open-plan as possible.”

They also wanted these kitchens to be highly functional and beautiful, and “they needed to have a very quiet furniture kind of feel to them.” They worked with their FORM designer Dorothy to design beautifully integrated kitchens with no uppers and with hallmark features like paneled appliances that felt quietly tucked away. They also loaded the base cabinets with tons of functionality, so they could deliver fully stocked kitchens without having to have an island. 

“We wanted people to walk in and feel like they were being invited into their own home. That’s why we matched the black matte cabinets with a black matte countertop, and all of the sinks and faucets also have that elegantly understated feel.” They wanted everything to be soothing, warm, and inviting, but they also didn’t want to compromise on having the benefits of a fully operational kitchen.

They carried the FORM aesthetic and cabinetry into their wonderful, spa-like bathrooms as well. They used FORM’s floating vanities in a soft-gray finish that matches the concrete tile. “We wanted the airiness of floating vanities to continue that tranquil feel and we also wanted the same level of functional storage that we had in the kitchen. It’s a really successful moment of continuity from the kitchen to the bathroom, which helps tie together the overall aesthetic of these spaces.”

These beautifully designed spaces truly speak for themselves, and their original vision was certainly accomplished, and then some. They’re proud and thrilled to have created a really special place that instantly feels like the home you’ve wanted. And they’re proud to have created such a modern retreat that feels so beautifully integrated into the town that they love. And you can book your stay at 9 Academy by clicking here, and have your own home away from home experience in the wonderful town in Northwest CT. (And we’re sure you’ll enjoy the kitchens). 

"We believe that good design improves people's lives. We focus on personalization, performance, and peace of mind."

Co-founders Danny and Tom

Danny Soos & Tom Sherman

FORM Co-Founders

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