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Commercial Design

Old School Remodel for Landmark Jersey Restaurant

Old School Remodel for Landmark Jersey Restaurant A steakhouse in New Jersey wanted to recapture their old-fashioned atmosphere after a fire - and including faux materials in the remodel was the answer. Going for a steak and a beer probably shouldn't be considered 'research', so I won't be claiming this one on expenses - but the other night, when I was out having a juicy sirloin and watching the UFC fights, I tracked down some of our faux wood beams 'in the wild.' Faux rough cut beams installed in a landmark New Jersey steakhouse. These rough cut beams are incredibly realistic. A steakhouse in New Jersey, who didn't want to be named right now, had four enormous Rough Hewn Beams, with supporting trusses made from smaller width of the same product, spanning the enormous length of their low ceiling. It was actually kind of amusing - my friend and I sat looking at the beams, discussing whether or not they were real, until I actually got up on my chair and started rapping on the side of them with my knuckles to see if they were hollow or not. That's when the owner came out and confirmed that the beams weren't real - and explained why. The steakhouse was something of an instution in the city, and had been there since the 1930s. Wood paneled walls and genuine ceiling beams were part of the decor, and the patrons loved it. A few years ago a fire had gutted the entire building, bringing down the roof and the beams with it. When they rebuilt, the roof was replaced with a modern steel-beam construction and those beautiful original beams were gone. The faux brick behind the bar looks stunning. Almost immediately, business dropped, and customers started complaining that the snug, historic-feeling steakhouse seemed as bland as a chain resturant now - so the owner started researching how to get the authentic look back. In the end, he used genuine reclaimed wood on the walls, just like the old building had. But the beams were a major issue. In addition to being incredibly difficult to install on the new, modern roof - it would have cost thousands to buy lengths of timber that thick and wide. Fortunately, the contractor doing the repairs knew of and recommended the product. The owner of the steakhouse was able to buy beautiful reproduction beams for a fraction of the cost of real wood, and then install them easily and safely to the roof. The final details were to build supports with smaller length of beam - simple enough, because the beams are made from high-density polyurethene foam, and easy to cut with a wood saw. The owner also stained the beams to match the reclaimed wood walls. At the same time, the owner even went a step further and added a non-original accent wall behind the bar using faux brick from our sister store, The results look amazing - recapturing the look of the original steakhouse and bringing the atmosphere that customers loved back to the place. The owner is overjoyed - and happy that the whole project cost a lot less than it could have with authentic wood and brick materials.