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- VOA Associates Inc.
- Blue Plate Catering
- Consultants EME LLC; Radiant Design
- Division Commercial
- Location Chicago, IL
- General contractor W. E. O'Neill Construction Company
This 7,000-square-foot restaurant was designed with its client's clients in mind. It was important that the space, located in the historic Merchandise Mart building, be dramatic and sophisticated enough to appeal to the end user, customers of the many interiors showrooms in the Mart. The unusual trapezoidal bar area creates an immediate sense of drama, as do the contrasting light and dark materials used throughout. Room functions are elegantly defined: zebra wood walls, floors, seating and ceiling welcome patrons to an intimate lunch while additional dining is set off behind blue glass panels and indicated by sleek dark community tables. The architects name German-born performance artist Klaus Nomi as an influence—an influence perhaps reflected in their selection of materials that are mostly contrasting, angular and sleek. The conscientious lighting further appeals to the design-savvy patrons.