This restaurant, located in the heart of Toronto's midtown, is designed for a client renowned for creating luxurious and sumptuous dining experiences. The design begins with the existing 1975 office tower by Leslie Rebanks. The intent was to provide a new function to the space and rooftop while having minimal change to the facade and other architectural features of the building. The design of Arthur's restaurant bridges the modern aesthetic of the 1970's office building and the client's vision of a traditional steakhouse. The minimalist detailing respects the former while the material palette imbues the latter.
The main dining room features a suspended convex ceiling that amplifies the purity of the octagonal form of the building. Connected by tall wall panels, the facets in the ceiling and chevron wood floor radiate around the perimeter and draw inward to complete the space as a monochromatic wood volume. The geometry of this ceiling is derived from the perimeter extents of the building faceted into a finer scale through repetition and proportion. It organizes the space around the edges and continuously refers back to the center of the room thus creating a sense of intimacy within the large space.
Luxury and opulence are crafted within the series of volumes and spaces through the extensive use of leather, dark wood and patinated bronze recalling the iconic materials of former steakhouses. Bronze clad walls and ceilings wrap the portals that open into the textural wood dining spaces. The matte black colour palette of the corridors dissolves into the background emphasizing the adjacent bronze thresholds. Similarly, the black clad kitchen falls into shadow and highlights the bustling activity in the prep and cooking areas.
The spectacle of the dining space is balanced by a low horizontal datum of fixed banquettes and loose furnishings that allow guests to see and be seen across the room. The center, articulated by the bronze vaulted void, delineates a spoked banquette below that looks outward to the perimeter banquettes circumscribing the space. A fine grain textural experience can be had looking up at the facets in the ceiling while in the embrace of tufted leather banquettes and plush wool chairs. The tactile and spatial design creates an ambience that mirrors the restaurant’s commitment to creating a unique elevated experience both reflected in the culinary endeavours and interior design.
Client: Chase Hospitality Group
Location: 22 St Clair Ave E, Toronto, Ontario
Base Building: Gensler (Architecture), Brown and Company (Structural)
General Contractor: Kilbarry Hill Construction Limited
Fabrication: Unique Store Fixtures
gh3* Team: Pat Hanson, Raymond Chow, Shawna Seligman, Tenzin Yeong