The newest Eddie V’s restaurant, tucked inside an 18-story historic building in downtown Pittsburgh, PA, is a bit of a departure for the brand. “We worked hard to marry a contemporary feel with the ornate architecture and rich history of the 1915 Union Trust Building,” said Darden Vice President of Design Todd Taylor.
“We kept many beautiful, original materials that were part of the building, such as travertine columns and the terrazzo flooring, with an eye toward historic preservation. We had to respect the architecture that was already there as well as create our own brand identity.”
Eddie V’s, modeled after a swanky, 1940s speakeasy, doesn’t want its restaurants to look the same. “We want guests to feel a sense of discovery,” Todd said, “and so we include design features that are hidden gems. If guests descend a series of steps to arrive at the main dining room, for instance, they may experience a feeling of adventure and a little buzz of pleasure.”
Some “hidden gems” of the Pittsburgh location, which opened March 6, include:
- A dramatic entrance. Upon entry, guests overlook the main dining room, and as they make their way down the stairs, they encounter the wine room, an arresting focal point that divides the lounge and dining spaces.
- Period lighting. Custom-made, crystal chandeliers that hark back to the early 20th century add glimmer and glam.
- Horseshoe-shaped bar. The space lent itself to a horseshoe-style bar, and Eddie V’s was eager to introduce that design instead of its usual “racetrack” bar, Todd said.
- Several wood finishes. In addition to traditional mahogany, the restaurant also uses walnut and ebony-stained wood for some of its paneling. Typically, Eddie V’s carries all finishes throughout every room, but in this location, the wood finishes, carpeting and lighting in the main dining area are different from those in the private dining rooms. “Each room has its own personality and speaks to guests in a different way,” Todd said.
Although each Eddie V’s restaurant is a little different, common threads such as wine rooms exist in most locations, adding to the elegance guests have come to expect. Other frequent features are multi-level seating, which allows the creation of quieter, private areas as well as more convivial spaces, and expo kitchens. “When our guests can see into the kitchen and watch the chefs prepare food, they become part of the experience,” Todd said.
“Our newest Eddie V’s is a stunning space, and we think guests will want to return to it again and again.”