More than 8,400 babies are born at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns each year; more than any other hospital in California. The main entrance sets the tone for the overall delivery experience. Understanding this, Sharp Healthcare set out to create an arrival experience that reflected the hospital’s high standards of care, level of quality, and welcoming environment. Schmidt Design Group, Inc. was charged with redesigning the hospital’s main entrance as a space reflective of the Sharp Mary Birch mission. A custom 25-foot-diameter blue tile and granite water fountain is the centerpiece of the new design. The design of the fountain preserved a large existing specimen palm tree previously dedicated to the hospital and the gentle sight and sound of the ripples from the fountain provide a calming presence as patients enter the facility.
The once dark entryway is now a warm and inviting space, lit by a large, signature chandelier custom designed by Schmidt Design Group, Inc. The chandelier draws inspiration from the prominent architectural columns surrounding the main entry and can be viewed from inside and outside the hospital. The plants used in the entryway relate to the overall campus landscape and feature a bright purple Jacaranda grove and large accent palms along the entry lane. A coffee cart located inside the entryway was redesigned and modernized in a manner that reflects the overall aesthetic. A newly configured driveway, walkways, and signage simplify the path to the main hospital entrance while creating a safer environment for patients leaving the hospital in wheelchairs. The beautification of the Sharp Mary Birch entryway is an important example of how sophisticated and elegant design contributes to the patient experience by creating a calming and welcoming environment.