The “Montserrat” live room

When we began the journey of designing a studio, we wanted it to be special.  Very special.  A destination studio in one of the most beautiful places on the planet had to be special.

We researched other destination studios and constantly came to the story of Sir George Martin's AIR Studios Montserrat - the iconic studio where Dire Straits recorded Brothers in Arms.  Where The Police recorded their last two albums including the hits "Every breath you take" and "Everything she does is magic".  Where Mick & Keith finally got The Rolling Stones back together and recorded.  Where Elton John got his band back together and continued his musical journey.  So many other tales of history - there had to be something magical to that studio.

So we reached out to the island and got in touch with a few of the remaining team who designed and operated that epic studio.  And we built relationships that helped us understand the magic that was AIR Studios Montserrat.  Alas that studio was destroyed by a hurricane in the late 1980s, and then separated from all services of the island by a massive volcano eruption in the 1990s.  But the spirit of AIR Studios Montserrat lives on.  It touched all of our culture and history, yet few understand even where it was.

The sound of the 80s

When we chose to design our live room based on the live room of that epic studio, it was because of the sound of the live room.  There was something to it - it was clean, fresh and energetic.  It is hard to know exactly what created that ambience.  Was it the strange latticed ceiling?  Or the wall treatments?  Maybe the wood of the floor boards?  Or the stone features?

Our design goals all along were to try and capture the magical sound of that studio.  In many conversations with those who worked there, and historians, we realized that much of the magic was the island itself and its people.  We get it - Mexico is not an island.  But it has the most amazing, friendly and welcoming people we've ever met on this planet.  And maybe that brings its own kind of magic to whatever is recorded here.

The upside of being in a town such as San Miguel de Allende is that we have a massive arts culture and restaurant world.  This is Conde Nast's #1 "Small city in the world" and continues to win that award year after year.  Why can't it bring back the sound of the 80s, but in its own way?  As we like to call it, THE SAN MIGUEL SOUND.

The piano

Montserrat had a Bosendorfer grand piano in the studio.  After numerous consultations with legendary piano players including Ben Folds & his team, we decided against the Bosendorfer, and opted to choose between a Steinway Model B, or a Yamaha C3.  We are still not locked down on that yet, but the alcove for the piano is built and ready for the delivery of the piano once the building is completed.  We expect that to happen in the 2nd half of 2024.  We'll update you then as to what is in place.

But on the other side of the glass...

We chose not to design the control room in the same way as AIR Studios Montserrat.  Considering that back in the 1980s they had redundant 24 track 2" tape units, which is rarely used today, and that we can't duplicate the Neve console they had, we went with our own Neve console and built a very large and spacious control room that would make it super comfortable to clients to relax in there, alongside the engineers.  This, combined with an epic producer station, meant that we had all the latest tech and the right environment to ensure that the mixes we produce are epic.  Just like they were in Montserrat.  Job done.

Experience the continuation of the legacy

Our live room design pays homage to the legend of Sir George Martin and his studio, AIR Studios Montserrat, but in the center of Mexico.  If you would like to bring your musical project to it, just CONTACT US and we can arrange a tour here in San Miguel de Allende.