Photography courtesy of Urban Cowboy
Urban Cowboy, the 1980 movie directed by James Bridges and starring John Travolta, is more or less a transplant of Saturday Night Fever to Texas. Piggybacking on the success of Travolta’s career-launching hit, Cowboy brought Travolta to the Lonestar state and had him put on a different set of duds to reprise a version of his New York dandy persona.
Urban Cowboy, the 2014 bed and breakfast developed by Lyon Porter and designed by Porter and Renee Mee, reinvents the spirit of its namesake film, bringing a taste of rural upstate New York to the Lorimer L-train stop in Williamsburg.
“Urban industrial meets luxury townhouse living meets the Adirondacks,” Porter says of the space, and he’s dead-on. The dominant building material is pinewood, from the dark-stained exterior to the master bedroom’s reclaimed barn doors to Konoono, the Adirondack cabin in the backyard. Everything is intensely curated down to the bathroom wallpaper and Viking kitchen appliances, exuding a comfortable-in-its-skin luxury that sometimes takes generations to achieve.
Lyon envisions the Cowboy as a space for free-flowing conversation and camaraderie—where guests can arrive as strangers and leave as friends. Want to know what there is to do in New York? Ask innkeeper Jersey Banks or Porter’s friends and acquaintances, who he seems sure will be in and out for dinner parties. Guests, of course, will be welcome to join. “Brooklyn is now the coolest place in the Western Hemisphere,” Porter says. Now, he’s bringing a touch of country to the borough, and he’s doing it with the materials of a pinewood derby racer.