Restaurant designer Stephen Francis Jones has several new restaurants opening around town, two of which are in Santa Monica.
For nearly two decades, Jones has been designing restaurants, hotels and spas around the world, from Wolfgang Puck’s Spago in Beverly Hills to the retro chain Lucky Strike Lanes to the wildly successful MB Post in Manhattan Beach to Nairobi Java House franchises and a new artisan pizza concept (360 Degrees) in Kenya.
His two newest endeavors in Santa Monica are the Redwood Grille and Del Frisco’s Grille, located just a few blocks from each other near the Santa Monica Third Street Promenade and pier. Both feature similar menus and cuisine and have great views.
“I see my role as adapting to the style of each client, whether they are an established group or starting a new concept,” said Jones in a release.
As a result, the Redwood Grille, a new establishment featuring classic American cuisine and 8500 square feet of seating space, Jones brought on a graphic designer to help develop the new endeavor’s brand and image and incorporate it into the redesigned interior space atop the third level of the Santa Monica Place Mall.
“The biggest challenge was to work with the bones of what was there and to create an engaging design,” said Jones, who moved the bar to orient it toward the entry and created a new 2500 square foot patio space that opens onto the Promenade. “In every restaurant, I try to create multiple intimate spaces that relate to the whole. I like creating environments that are unique within the restaurant, but still connect.”
Subtly evoking the majesty of a redwood forest, the space offers some private spaces that encourage intimacy as well as a large communal table fashioned from 22 foot redwood tree. With a tailored, stylish décor, the restaurant both looks and feels like the personality of the client – sophisticated, serious, and passionate.
A few blocks away, the new Del Frisco’s Grille offers a different vibe. The menu offers creative twists on classic American comfort food. Jones has made the 10-foot high windows and the picture postcard view a central feature of the space.
“Del Frisco’s is more about fun, so we got to use color a lot more. Furthermore, since this was a chain that had been developed in other cities, I could take some of those elements that worked at other locations and bring them to here,” Jones said.