American firm Square Feet Studio has used subtle maritime references, like wood panelling, and hints of blue and green, throughout this seafood restaurant in Atlanta.
Watchman’s Seafood & Spirits opened inside an existing restaurant space at the Georgia city’s Krog Street Market, which Square Feet Studio overhauled as the third project with the restaurant’s four owners.
Featuring white built-in benches and hardwood floors, the space is intended to feel open and bright, and as if it had existed in the market for many years.
Another aim was to relate the restaurant’s interior to the cuisine it serves, without making it overtly nautical.
Occupying a corner unit, the restaurant has floor-to-ceiling windows that face onto the concourse. Square Feet Studio added a skylight inside a new coffered ceiling to bring even more light inside.
Dozens of plants hang from the old steel structure across the ceiling. Randomly spaced shelves on one side also hold small potted plants.
Indoor plants are a popular design feature in recent restaurant projects, including a pizzeria in Argentina, a Japanese cafe in Quebec City, a Mediterranean restaurant in LA, and a Vietnamese spot in Brooklyn.
Watchman’s includes two bars, which were kept in their existing locations. “For simplicity, the existing locations for each bar were kept intact,” said a statement on behalf of the restaurant.
“But the finishes, casework, lighting, panelling and equipment were extensively reworked for each, giving the bar area its own distinctive feel from the dining room.”
Wood panelling forms the backdrop for one, where oysters are kept on ice at a high-top counter. This feature wall was added to provide a rustic cosiness to the space, along with additional casework and lighting.
Floors near the bar areas are covered in pink and green cement tiles, which transition to warm heart pine in the dining area. A herringbone pattern on the countertops is made from the same wood.
Other tabletops are lacquered in an emerald green by local furniture studio B10 Union, which also built the restaurant’s white banquettes and booths.
Throughout Watchman’s Seafood are bentwood chairs and barstools, which were reused and refreshed with a mint-toned lacquer.
The “spare nautical” aesthetic is continued with brass accents and more blueish tones, plus jute macramé around the hanging plants that was handmade by one of the owner’s mothers.
Photography is by Andrew Thomas Lee.
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