Such a basic (bare) and honest approach has not been the way of most commercial design in the past, where excess design features and embellishments were deemed necessary to differentiate from the competition. Largely, these operator visions were feeding egos and chasing ambitious dreams…and there was financing. We see over branding and too much concepting, adornment and elaboration, which often meant under-appreciated décor and wasted resources.
Pared-back design is now the sensible and responsible way of the present and future. Embrace the wave of excellent new local foodie places like Banker’s Hill Bar and Restaurant and Craft and Commerce – simple, modest and raw. These low-tech, crafted fit-outs strip back what was and add minimally using repurposed materials and found objects. Still feeling real but on a grander scale, experience Seersucker and Cucina Urbana. Borough Food and Drink of NYC nailed this casual neighborhood ‘look and feel’ over four years ago. It was Jeffrey Chodorow’s third concept for the same space in the Flatiron District and is sadly now closed.
Nonetheless, the beloved Vegas-style of OTT (over the top) build-outs should not desist…nor be replicated. That party must go on so we can always be pushing the boundaries, but this planet needs just one Vegas. Competing with soul-less Dubai only on the Ostentatious Offerings level, LV is still plodding along on its way to being the new Milan of our Western culture – dictating and defining current design, style, fashion, taste and behavior (good or bad, by the way). Why and how, you might ask? All people have access and exposure to that place and seek it like the internet, and also the biggest bucks from all over the World check into Vegas, baby! Money meets audacity fueled by desire. But more about that juicy topic in another blog.