Evolution by Design: Canlis 3.0

Nationally Acclaimed Northwest Designers Enhance a Seattle Dining Legend

SEATTLE, June 8 /PRNewswire/ — How does one build upon excellence? More excellence. Canlis restaurant recently enlisted four nationally acclaimed Northwest designers to further refine its signature Pacific Rim design: interior designer Doug Rasar, landscape architect David Pfeiffer, metal artist Stefan Gulassa, and architect Jim Cutler. Expect one-of-a-kind details that are subtle in beauty, yet draw discerning eyes to do double takes.

Rasar, Pfeiffer, Gulassa, and Cutler, the region’s most celebrated designers and all Lifetime Achievement winners, have worked closely with the Canlis family to push the design ahead of its time once again. They will be a part of Canlis’ sixth remodel in 55 years. The restaurant was last remodeled in 1996 by Cutler.

Upon Canlis’ debut in 1950, it was billed as “the most beautiful restaurant in the world.” The building itself was unlike anything the country had ever seen. Seattle historian Bill Speidel called it “a bold experiment.” Culled from the imagination of founder Peter Canlis and famed architect Roland Terry, Canlis was a pioneer in many respects: the first restaurant to expose the kitchen to the dining room; the first to use team-styled service, and the first a la carte menu now known as “Northwest cuisine.”

Gulassa is creating a custom-designed bench and coffee table in collaboration with Rasar’s vision for the entryway, which blurs the line between the restaurant’s interior and Pfeiffer’s garden outside. The landscape flows through an illusory glass corner like a planted and bubbling variation on Rasar’s interior palette of warm, zen-like tones. The magic of Pfeiffer’s Japanese maples, Mt. Baker flagstone and a 300-year-old cistern turned fountain begin the guest experience.

Rasar notes the key to Canlis’ longstanding beauty is the simplification of its design. “We’re disciplining ourselves to enhance the architecture and connect to the landscape,” he said. Every surface in Canlis is organic, visually rich and tactile in its composition. Fine walnut and African woods, metal finishes of nickel plate with gold wash, sting ray textured leathers, hand-woven Glant fabrics with silk highlights and hand-pressed paper wall- coverings define the new palette.

Original artwork from Tobey, Horiuchi, Chihuly and Tsutakawa is complemented by a large encaustic painting by Chris Cox, recently acquired from the Winston/Wachter Gallery. It will complement the restaurant’s most honored possession — the Kura Door. A Japanese treasure door used to protect ancient possessions in Japan, the artwork symbolizes a commitment to protect the most treasured memories of Canlis guests. More than just a beautiful place, design and beauty join as stepping stones towards the Canlis guest experience.

Setting the standard for America’s best dining experience; discover this cliffside gem overlooking Lake Union. Canlis is located at 2576 Aurora Ave., in Seattle. Visit Canlis’ Web site at www.canlis.com to learn more.

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