Restaurant Development & Design

July-August 2017

restaurant development + design is a user-driven resource for restaurant professionals charged with building new locations and remodeling existing units.

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3 8 • r e s t a u r a n t d e v e l o p m e n t + d e s i g n • J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 7 Ways to Get Expensive Looks for Less 6 they get bigger, so the representation goes from home to community. At the same location, Zinder took coins (sections from the middle) of a fallen tree — so there was no cost — and made a drinks table and a POS stand from them. "So it has this notion of sus- tainability and rejuvenation," he says. "We love using natural materials like stone or wood," Zinder adds, "but the reality is when you have clients with budgets, you have to come up with cre- ative solutions to maintain the aesthetic within their budget." The faux beams installed at One Fifty One in Elmhurst, Ill., serve no func- tional purpose, but they were inexpen- sive, look impressive and add a lot to the restaurant, says Nicole Poole, associate, project architectural designer, Aria Group Architects, Oak Park, Ill. "We used a cut plank, which was inexpensive, and clad and mitered each corner to create the beam look," Poole says. Poole also used a brick veneer for one of the walls in the restaurant instead of more expensive real brick, and for the floor, they opted for a long plank tile that had lots of variation, was durable and wouldn't show any repeating patterns. "It looks like a stone plank floor," she says. Throughout the restaurant — in the booths, on the ceiling, at the back of the bar and on the bar's die wall — is antique oak and corral board. "We seam it together because it's not very long, and you can see it if you look really closely at the beams in the ceiling. If you are open to varying widths and lengths, it keeps the costs down and gives that rustic feel," Poole says. Inside Lewis Barbecue, booths are made of a fence from a horse farm in Kentucky, which Berry's lumber source found for her. "We kept it the way it was because we liked the look — it even has bite marks from the horses," Berry says. "We just sealed it. If I'd wanted to recre- ate that finish with new wood, it would have been a lot more expensive — but the worn look was already there." 5. Partner with local artists. Due to the budget restrictions at One Fifty One, Poole worked with a local art- ist who created three animal heads — a large cow, flanked by a slightly smaller pig and sheep, almost to scale — largely from miscellaneous products in Aria's archive, including vinyl and leather samples. Other products for the heads, such as telephone wires, wood backer boards and plywood, were either donated or cost-effective. "It's a farm-to-table concept, so the animal heads worked really well," Poole says. The same artist, Amy Couey, helped keep costs down on a wall in one of the two semi-private dining rooms. "We found a grass cloth wallcovering, but we just couldn't afford it," Poole says. "We showed Amy the grass cloth, and she turned that concept into a mural paint- ing of an abstract meadow for a much lower price point." 6. Splurge selectively. Keeping costs down is also about know- ing what it's OK to spend money on. "In really important zones, we spent more," Poole says. For example, in One Fifty One, there are some fully upholstered chairs — "accent pieces that cost more," she says. "So we sprinkled in a few more expensive items in areas we knew would make more impact, espe- cially the upholstered chairs, which are the first thing you see when you come into the space." At Alba Ray's, Lantry added decorative corbels to the columns and beams — a typical look in the South. She purchased six for $250 each. It was expensive, "but not crazy for the impact they have," she says. She did the same with the lighting, sourcing some crown chandeliers and some traditional lanterns, custom made in New Orleans, which cost around $400 apiece, "but they add some luxe and authenticity to the space." Alba Ray's furniture is cheap, except for a couple of marble tabletops, "but that cheap look fits the aesthetic," she adds. "You've got to pick where you put things. You can't cut corners on the design and use cheaper materials throughout." + One Fifty One in Elmhurst, Ill., utilizes tile in place of wood on the floors. Photo by Emilia Czader

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