Taste One Four One, located on Front Street on the ground floor of the new 10-storey Seon Place, was designed by Linberg & Simmons as a place for occupants of the gargantuan office building and surrounding neighbours to enjoy a drink or bite to eat in a casual yet sophisticated environment.
At the start of the project senior interior designer Dawn Dunstan realised one of the biggest challenges she faced was incorporating so much into such a small space. Designing the space to successfully include a full-service kitchen, restaurant, restrooms and storage and staff facilities was a great challenge, especially when considering Dunstan also had to create a space that was beautiful and functional.
“The mechanical aspects of the project were very challenging as we had the unique situation of having to vent the kitchen on the ground floor out of a 10-storey office building without the smells and noise affecting any of the commercial office tenants,” says Dunstan.
“We created a new fire-rated mechanical chase that houses the exhaust ductwork from the ground floor up to the external vent location on the third floor. The external stainless-steel exhaust housing was designed to blend with the external design of the façade of the building to be inconspicuous to the pedestrian.”
But designing a restaurant is just as much about the aesthetics as it is about the mechanical features. Drawing on a few elements found elsewhere throughout Seon Place, namely the harbourfront view and the Seon Place logo of two sailing vessels passing in the wind, Dunstan was able to create a space that was not isolated from the rest of the building but was sleek and contemporary enough to hold its own audience as well.
“The Seon Place building provided some inspiration for the interior of Taste,” says Dunstan. “We incorporated the same dark walnut wood from the building lobby into the space. We chose a soft blue and neutral colour scheme to complement finishes used elsewhere in the base building. The colours and finishes were also selected to accentuate the ocean and reflect the harbour views from the building.”
The piece de resistance, however, is the large walnut-and-backlit-resin bar with its custom-designed 40-foot resin, walnut and metal Wovin Wall light fixture. Other custom pieces include resin chandeliers over the lounge seating; the curved, leather-panelled wall at the entrance to Taste, which had to be specially engineered and was then coloured and engraved with Taste’s pattern and logo; and the specially coloured, back-painted glass tables and bar stools, which were modified to support a more comfortable back height. Indeed, the custom features add a sophistication to the space that would be lacking without them. When new customers walk into Taste One Four One for the first time, they are instantly struck by the interesting design features that also function as pieces of art on the walls of this popular Hamilton eatery.
Unsurprisingly, Dunstan and the owners and operators of Taste One Four One are pleased with the design.
“I feel we were very successful in creating a sophisticated interior that lends itself to casual, comfortable dining.”
General Contractor—Greymane Contracting; HVAC/Mechanical Contractor—BAC; Electrical Contractor—Universal Electric; Plumbing Contractor—BAC; Paint/Painting—DeCosta Painting; Soft Furnishings—Diversified Services & A. F. Smith Trading; Leather Wall & Custom Light Fixtures—COE; Carpet Tile—Windward Supplies; Tile—Eminence; Kitchen Walls and Flooring—Stafford Flooring; Audio Visual—Digital Digs; Signage—Bermuda Blueprinting; Wall Covering—Abbott Decorating; Millwork & Kitchen Equipment—GTI; Millwork—E&G & Convoy Custom Interiors; Drapery—Hamma Galleries