Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 129

roman holiday
A Chicago restaurant transports guests to a stylish Italy
By JoAnn Greco Photography by Jeff Kauck
When Chicago’s Boka Restaurant Group—in partnership with the team behind the Bristol, a popular local nose-totail eatery—decided to completely rebrand its six-year-old Landmark restaurant into Italian concept Balena, the Boka team turned to longtime collaborator, Chicago-based 555 International. Karen Herold, 555’s vice president of design, balked at the initial vision. “They wanted elements that signal Italian rustic,” she says, “and I understood that from an emotional point of view. But I proposed that we expand on that idea. I said, let’s use Italian design that’s hipper and sexier.” For inspiration, she looked to the great Italian car designs of the ’50s and ’60s. “I thought of Ferraris and of Audrey Hepburn riding around Rome on a scooter with her hair wrapped in a scarf,” she says. “Swanky, but a little kitsch.” Touchstones of the style can be seen in the stitched detailing and the skinny bull-nosed edge of the leather bartop. And it’s there in one of the room’s signature pieces, a large custom designed clock that echoes the shape of a retro steering wheel. “It’s supposed to look like a found object,” Herold says, adding that the clock’s design even incorporates a stylized fin in a nod to the restaurant’s name, which means “whale” in Italian.

Above: For Italian restaurant Balena in Chicago, 555 International went with a “hipper, sexier” take on the Italian aesthetic by channeling Italian car designs from the ‘50s and ‘60s, as seen in the stitched detailing and smooth, sumptuous leather found throughout. Opposite page: Some of the two-story restaurant’s signature pieces include the large custom clock echoing the shape of a retro steering wheel, and the sanded and buffed cobblestoned wood floor.

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August 2012

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Hospitality Design - August 2012

Hospitality Design - August 2012
Contents
Online Contents
From the Editor
From the Show Director
People
Sketchbook
Trends
Competition
Interviews
Jason Wu
Kenneth Cobonpue
HD Boutique Preview
Lighting
Seating
Mirrors
Design-Driven Chefs
Tori Tori
Inbi
Brio
Churrascos
Balena
Back Space
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Intro
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Hospitality Design - August 2012
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Cover2
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 1
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 2
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 3
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 4
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 5
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 6
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 7
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 8
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 9
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 10
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 11
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 12
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 13
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 14
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 15
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 16
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 17
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 18
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Contents
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 20
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 21
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 22
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 23
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 24
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 25
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 26
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Online Contents
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 28
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 29
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - From the Editor
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 31
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - From the Show Director
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 33
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 34
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 35
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - People
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 37
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 38
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 39
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 40
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 41
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 42
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Sketchbook
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 44
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 45
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 46
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 47
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 48
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 49
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 50
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Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 52
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 53
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 54
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 55
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 56
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Trends
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 58
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 59
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 60
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 61
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 62
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 63
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 64
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 65
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 66
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Competition
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 68
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 69
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 70
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Interviews
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 72
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 73
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 74
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 75
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 76
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 77
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 78
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Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 80
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 81
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 82
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 83
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 84
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Jason Wu
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 86
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Kenneth Cobonpue
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - HD Boutique Preview
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 89
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 90
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 91
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 92
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Lighting
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 94
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 95
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 96
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Seating
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 98
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 99
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 100
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Mirrors
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 102
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Design-Driven Chefs
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 104
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 105
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 106
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 107
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 108
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 109
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Tori Tori
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 111
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 112
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 113
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 114
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 115
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Inbi
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 117
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 118
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 119
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Brio
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 121
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 122
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 123
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Churrascos
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 125
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 126
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 127
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Balena
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 129
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 130
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 131
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 132
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 133
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 134
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - 135
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Back Space
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Cover3
Hospitality Design - August 2012 - Cover4
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