Premier Project Management completed a restaurant renovation at the Hilton Fort Worth (Texas) at the end of March. Ashford Hospitality Trust owns the hotel, which is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Premier Project Management spearheaded the interior design, food-service design and coordination, purchasing and project management for the renovation of the onsite food-and-beverage offering, Herb N’ Kitchen. The company and its design team converted an out-of-date and underutilized space into an all-day F&B outpost. The company specializes in “stealth” project management, which allows for little to no interruption of business during the renovation, a key factor for this project.
Premier incorporated a lobby bar and various seating options to create a more welcoming space for locals and guests alike, catering to groups of various sizes. The space offers a food counter for quick grab-and-go items and a “diner-style” walnut live edge for eat-in customers. Herb N’ Kitchen also offers a food counter with a pizza oven, a salad/sandwich station and a breakfast buffet. This reinvisioned, transitional day-into-night dining space was designed and tailored to revive and transform the entire first floor of the historic hotel.
Setting the hotel apart from surrounding properties, Herb N' Kitchen is the only on-tap beer and wine bar in the immediate downtown Fort Worth area. Featuring 36 taps, which serve up an assortment of both beers and wine, the bar’s custom hand-painted, cast-resin, steer-horn bar taps are reminiscent of a cow horn—a nod to the locale. The ample bar seating, catering to both solo diners and groups, is upholstered in amber-colored material, contrasting the neutrality of the dark wood columns and cream-colored stone countertops. Leather is upholstered on the bottom of the bar, building on the natural element of the materials.
Further accentuating the earthy colorstory, two eye-catching, expansive wall panels flank the back of the space to provide depth; the natural pattern of the striation appears as if the wall is cut into the earth. The juxtaposition of the materials—natural wood and contemporary white resin—is indicative of the cultural transition between “old” and “new” that the Dallas Fort Worth area has experienced over the past decade.
The faux fireplace, which utilizes water vapor to mimic the aesthetic of real fire, creates a sense of movement, reiterating the warmth of the tan and amber-colored seating. Granite and marble countertops work together with the porcelain-tile flooring to brighten the darker tones—the combination of both hard and soft materials creating a warm, inviting but contemporary aesthetic.
Wishbone banquette seating is complemented by custom cast-iron sconce light fixtures, accentuating the dramatic height of the space and creating a sense of scale by balancing the size and thickness of the structural columns. Noted as one of the biggest architectural challenges of the project, the design team celebrated the 18 columns by cladding each surface with wood—mirroring the materiality of the banquet tables—and adding downlighting. This also provided a solution to the contrasting ceiling height, providing a unifying design throughout the entire depth of the space.