Doris Duke Foundation
Melvyn Green & Associates, Inc.
Married in 1935, Doris Duke, an American tobacco heiress and philanthropist, and her American diplomat husband, James Cromwell, visited India during their honeymoon. This visit resulted in Duke’s commission of Makrana marble panels – the same marble used at the Taj Mahal – weighing several hundred pounds each. In 1936, the panels arrived at Duke’s estate in Hawaii (called “Shangri La”) and these marble screens, or jalis, were used to create an enclosure on the roof of the master bedroom. This enclosure is called the “Jali Pavilion.”
Originally, the marble panels were supported by a cast concrete framing. When Shangri La opened to the public in 2001, the Jali Pavilion’s concrete framing was severely damaged due to element exposure. In 2012, a report was assembled to assess the pavilion’s condition and to recommend cleaning and repair procedures.
Spectra was hired to recreate the failed cast stone and restore the damaged or broken marble panels. The broken panels were shipped from Hawaii to Spectra’s shop in Pomona to perform the repairs. Spectra created molds and replicated cast stone surrounds from salvaged pieces and restored the fragmented marble panels. Once the pieces were complete, they were shipped (73 crates weighing 80,000 pounds total) onsite in Hawaii and the Spectra team worked to assemble the fabricated pieces using a structural epoxy adhesive. This project received the 2014 Historic Hawaii Foundation Preservation Award.
Decorative Concrete • Preservation Consulting • Sculptures • Stone
Historic Hawai'i Foundation Preservation Award 2014