Higher Education Design 5,000 Feet Above The Rest

Explore CSU’s only on-campus apartments designed to be an intercultural living experience for undergraduate, graduate, postdoctoral students, and visiting scholars.

By GR Chair

College students in dorm room.

When you step inside one of the three buildings that make up Aggie Village on Colorado State University's campus, you might be shocked to realize you’re standing in student housing. The bright, open space spotted with pool tables, plush lounging areas, and sleek kitchen spaces is more reminiscent of a modern, millennial office space than a college dorm.

But CSU’s only on-campus apartments were designed to be an intercultural living experience (rather than just a place to live) for undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students as well as visiting scholars to CSU’s campus. Three contemporary buildings, each with its own unique design and feel, were decorated to reflect that goal and are a shining example of exemplary higher education design.

Set of Brady Bar Stools and Brady Table in dorm room.

Each aesthetic detail was painstakingly chosen by Styleworks, a Denver-based, boutique interior design firm specializing in hospitality, multi-family, higher education, and residential projects. With 973 beds, a courtyard, and an auditorium in the complex, Styleworks had the daunting task of outfitting the enormous project in under two months. Rising to the challenge (and delivering spectacularly), the local studio worked from a design provided by the university to specify all FF&E products that would reflect the laid-back vibe of Fort Collins but also offer a modern feel that would appeal to its young inhabitants. The space needed to look like a home, not a student union.

To achieve this look, Styleworks turned to vendors, like us, who could offer furniture in light and Maple finishes, and provide a fresh look that would endure both in style and durability for five to ten years without needing a redesign.

Inside the apartments, modern Sadie Barstools are pushed up to a custom Brady Table. The wood and steel combo of Sadie, combined with the steel base of Brady, creates a modern, cozy area to eat, work, or socialize. The Roy Occasional Tables provide chic, yet functional surfaces and pair clean, bold lines with a beautiful wood surface.

In a university nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Styleworks emphasized Coloradans’ love of nature. The light Maple surfaces of Brady and Roy offer a rich, natural aesthetic while the steel accents provide a modern, enduring accent. Stone fireplaces mimic a ski lodge while the sleek, sharp lines of the furniture offer a contemporary vibe, reflecting the nature-meets-urban living atmosphere of Colorado.

Pairing the design elements chosen by Styleworks with activities like movie nights, book clubs, and outdoor gathering areas creates a community where residents can thrive rather than just live.