Ken Fulk chooses candy colours for Swan restaurant in Miami

American interior designer Ken Fulk is behind the pastel palette at this new restaurant and bar in the Miami Design District.


Swan restaurant interior by Ken Fulk

The neighbourhood’s latest food and nightlife destinations, Swan and Bar Bevy, opened in November 2018 by local hospitality bigwig David Grutman and musician Pharrell Williams, to media fanfare and a celebrity crowd.

With a menu by chef Jean Imbert, the two-storey restaurant and bar was designed by San Francisco- and New York-based Ken Fulk, who opted for a tropical aesthetic apt for the setting.

Swan restaurant interior by Ken Fulk

Swan occupies the ground floor, with eating areas that spill out into the secluded courtyard filled with local flora. “We created a courtyard that felt very private, so it was interior facing and wasn’t bright and shiny and outward facing,” Fulk told Dezeen during a tour of the space.

Swan restaurant interior by Ken Fulk

The interior is decorated with soft, candy colours that remind of Miami’s 1920s heyday. “The restaurant does have a real feminine flair to it,” said Fulk. “It’s a little old-fashioned-feeling on purpose, like harking from another time.”

Swan restaurant interior by Ken Fulk

Upon entering the space through glass doors, a curved bar is positioned straight ahead. The horseshoe-shaped pewter counter is accompanied by stools and backed with pink onyx. It forms both a central area for socialising, and a divider for more intimate dining spaces on either side.

These too feature a pastel palette, with pale pink walls and upholstery, and cream-coloured furniture.

Swan restaurant interior by Ken Fulk

Art deco-style lighting fixtures hang from the ceiling, while diamond patterns decorate several surfaces, including the tiled flooring.

A corridor that leads to the kitchen and bathrooms has walls lined with a print of dark green tropical leaves. This area also provides access to a private dining room, which can be booked out for parties, and a further bar that will eventually also open as a cafe during the mornings.

Swan restaurant interior by Ken Fulk

Upstairs, the design of Bar Bevy is a different story. “Inside, we created two really different experiences,” Fulk said.

The much darker space evokes a Moroccan aesthetic through latticed screens, patterned wallpaper and rugs, and seating areas enclosed by curtains the resemble Bedouin tents.

Bar Bevy interior by Ken Fulk

The richer colours in the bar, including deep reds and blues, are accentuated by muted lighting – a sharp contrast to the bright and airy restaurant downstairs.

Bar Bevy interior by Ken Fulk

Swan and Bar Bevy are located at NE 39th Street and NE 1st Avenue in Miami Design District, just north of the city’s Downtown area.

The neighbourhood has changed dramatically over the past five years, since local developer Craig Robins decided to transform a neglected swathe of land into a luxury retail and cultural destination.

Bar Bevy interior by Ken Fulk

“Craig has built this wonderful temple of a neighbourhood, filled with all these luxury brands, amazing things happening,” said Fulk. “We wanted to create a space that felt like it could be the heartbeat, bring a little heart and soul, and be a refuge… that you can sneak away to and hang out at.”

The architecture across district is purposefully eclectic, as tenants are encouraged to be experimental with facade treatments and interior designs. Dior, Tom Ford and Christian Louboutin are among those with standout stores within walking distance of Swan.

Photography is by The Morelli Brothers.

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