A.J. Artemel is a second-year student at Yale School of Architecture. He holds a BS Arch and a Minor in Urban and Environmental Planning from the University of Virginia.
Designers create a "place to be seen" in Toronto.
The design of a restaurant can have a big effect on whether it’s successful or not; often diners are looking for somewhere new, different, and exciting, and yet does not detract from their ability to actually eat the food. Diners expect to be able to impress their friends with their food choices, especially when they are paying about $30 per plate, as at New York’s Scarpetta.
This is why when the chain hired II BY IV Design and gh3 to design a new location in Toronto, they wanted it to be a 'place to be seen.' The designers obliged, creating a large truss-like black box within which they situate the dining area. Located by the side of a pool, and surrounded by The Thompson Hotel, residential towers and a public park, the new pavilion sets customers on display.
Within the structure, diners sit at a single long table, parties separated by conspicuous level changes along the chrome and Corian table’s length. This singular piece of furniture is capped by reflective bar, and lined with chrome and white leather chairs. This spatial configuration is a natural outcome of the long, narrow aspect ratio of the site, which made it difficult to produce a more traditional restaurant layout. The results are worth the difficulty, though…if you are willing to pay to experience them, that is.