of Healing

A collaboration between NBBJ’s lighting and landscape architecture studios, the Vail Garden elevates the “healing hospitality” design concept of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation’s Sydell & Arnold Miller Family Pavilion.

The Vail Garden, named for Cleveland philanthropists Tom and Iris Vail, is located at the entrance of the Miller Pavilion to bring the landscape indoors and transition people graciously into the world of the clinic. The garden features a cast-glass sculpture wall by Joel Berman Glass, illuminated on both sides by two rows of color-changing LED fixtures concealed within it. Conceptually, it is an aboveground extension of the underground passage, whose glass walls are also backlit by color-changing LEDs, between the parking garage and clinic.

The landscaping is a contemporary expression of the basic elements found in fine gardens: a groundcover bed, reflecting pool, hedge, flowerbed, sculpture, and garden wall. At night, the wall’s effect is heightened by reflections in the pool at the wall’s base and by floodlights behind the hedge that dramatically illuminate the adjacent historic facade, which becomes a backdrop that ties together the careful composition.

Awards and Publications


Ohio Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects, Award of Excellence


Interior Design, “In Cleveland, a Garden Designed with Heart,” February 1, 2007