Bates Masi + Architects has designed ‘Asset’, a new restaurant in Manhattan, that’s located within an old building that had architectural details hidden behind years of renovations.
“In the renovation of 329 Columbus Avenue to create Asset restaurant, we sought to excavate the existing space in search of unique textures and hints of the past that would enrich the guest experience.” – Bates Masi + Architects
Through the process of 3D scanning, they discovered that vaults of expanded metal lath were tucked out of sight above the fire rated ceiling. The vaults were reintroduced as an exposed element, helping to conceal steel girders.
The process of excavation was also applied to the oak paneling on the walls, like in the bar area. The boards were sandblasted to erode the soft earlywood that lies between the harder latewood grain, thereby enhancing its character and increasing its sound absorption.
Further into the restaurant, there’s small wooden booths for two line that have light grey upholstery.
These booth seats are also located against on of the walls, with hidden lighting behind the banquette seating, while lighting above shows off the metal details.
Black metal stairs on each side of the restaurant lead from the main level up to the mezzanine, creating an eye-catching moment the minute a guest steps into the space. The grand stair is divided in 2 parts, 1 side for service and the other for guests, with the 2 sides merging in a gentle curve reminiscent of the ceiling vaults.
Upstairs, larger wood tables surrounded by black chairs provide plenty of space for small groups.