San Francisco restaturant Lord Stanley has been getting major nods for both its food and the stunning interior. (It was named #3 Best New Restaurant by Bon Appetit in 2016 AND on Architectural Digest list of World’s Most Beautiful Dining Rooms.) It didn’t get that way without quite a bit of work from the husband-and-wife team behind the restaurant. The space had been a Thai restaurant for about twenty years and required a renovation to bring the space up to code. That renovation revealed many of the elements that are now key to the restaurant’s design.

As fans of minimal, uncluttered spaces, Carrie and Rupert Blease wanted to the highlight the bones of the space – the steel moment frames, the timber structural beams, the antique glass windows – and keep the focus on the food. The couple does occasionally regret the all-white interior due to the amount of upkeep but they do love the how light and airy the space feels. A particular favorite area, the mezzanine, reminds the couple of the New York restaurant where they were married, so it has a sense of nostalgia. The space is more private but still contacted to the atmosphere and vibe of the main dining room. Carrie and Rupert remodeled all of the railings to open the space up and added warmth with a custom felted wall hanging by their friend Ashley Helvey. The result? Not a bad seat in the place.