SEPIA Restaurant

Interior Architecture Award Submission

Goal: Create a showcase of prohibition Chicago with international dining flair in a former 1880s print shop.

Rustic wood, glass, and ironwork on the exterior extend an unpretentious greeting to diners.

The warm, worn hand-crafted millwork of the hostess station contrasts with the sleek white marble bar. Ornamental lamps and vintage stemware evoke memories of a by-gone era. Art Nouveau inspired custom concrete tile flooring adds unassuming texture.

Chandeliers cloaked in smoky shades add drama to the dining space. Obtrusive beams are tiled in sepia-colored glass, fading them into a textured landscape.

Exposed brick and down-lights highlight the beauty of the existing structure. Custom wine walls provide storage and present the bottles as graphic elements.

The intimate circular dining nook envelops private-dining guests.

Result: Blending style and comfort, past and present, simplicity and elegance, the restaurant was named the 2008 Best New Restaurant by TimeOut Chicago.

Gary Lee Partners
General contractor
Icon Realty Management
Chicago, Illinois