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The Best Restaurant Architects and Designers in Boston

14 Min Read

Boston is full of culture and pride. It is a place that can help you get to the next stage of your life, whether you have a new family or you’re a recent college graduate, a retiree, or a seasoned professional. If you want to start a business or restaurant in this vibrant city, get to know twelve of the best restaurant architects in Boston, Massachusetts. These impressive firms were evaluated based on their skills, experience, and expertise.


Bergmeyer

51 Sleeper Street, 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02210

Bergmeyer is an architectural firm that offers exceptional designs that are thoughtful, creative, naturally curious, and driven to meet the needs of its clients. Its approach to design is personalized and collaborative; it involves working with its clients and project teams to form proactive and long-lasting relationships. As a result, everyone is aligned with everything happening within the project, ensuring a smooth, seamless project delivery. The firm provides a single-source solution for its clients, including architecture, interior design, branding, graphic design, and strategy. It has completed many projects in a range of markets, including retail, restaurants, workplaces, commercial, multi-family residential, academic, cultural, hospitality, healthcare, and pop-ups.

One of the firm’s notable projects is the RUKA Restobar, the first Nikkei and Chifa restaurant in Boston. After going to Peru several times, the chef-owners of RUKA were inspired by the rich fusion food and the busy city life of Lima. They were eager to bring that magic combination to Boston. The new space offers a rustic charm—it’s the perfect place for hanging out with friends and family.


Arrowstreet

10 Post Office Square, Suite #700N, Boston, MA 02109

Arrowstreet is an award-winning architecture and design firm based in Boston. It is backed by a team of expert architects, interior designers, planners, and graphic designers who are excellent observers and bring different points of view to every project. Since its inception in 1960, the firm has grown and changed to help it stay at the top of the field. For each project, the firm puts together a team with the right mix of planning, programming, building technology, environmental graphic design, and construction skills to ensure high-quality projects are delivered on schedule and within budget. Backed by years of experience, creativity, and flexibility, the firm develops unique ideas by finding creative solutions to problems and critically thinking about how each project will affect the environment.

Bar Mercato is based on the open markets of Europe and reminds people of a fascinating past. The restaurant is on the first floor of the new part of the Hyatt Centric hotel, which was also designed by Arrowstreet. With views into Quaker Lane, the full-height glass lets the historic fire escape and masonry buildings around the restaurant become a part of the dining experience. The immersive design process was crucial for achieving a modern European feel through exposed mechanical systems and structural elements.


Studio Luz Architects

67 Poplar Street, Boston, MA 02131

Studio Luz is a forward-thinking, collaborative architectural firm that offers responsible designs and sustainable construction. The firm is dedicated to working collaboratively with others to ensure smooth and streamlined project delivery. The firm was founded by Hansy L. Better Barraza and Anthony J. Piermarini in 2002. During its 20 years in the industry, the firm has built an impressive portfolio with exceptional projects that have been widely praised and won many honors and awards worldwide. Its personalized approach allows it to rethink how space, materials, and technology can be used to bring out the unique possibilities on each project. The firm has a long list of clients who can testify to the firm’s impressive quality and superior professionalism.

The idea behind this featured design comes from the way the Japanese Tori gates at the Fushimi Inari Shrine create rhythmic passageways. Inspired by how water shimmers and creates optical illusions, Fin’s Japanese Sushi & Grill features ceiling beams lit up in a way that makes it look like they are bending and moving. The shape, arrangement, accessibility, and locations of the tables are determined by social interactions and groups, ensuring an efficient and functional layout. The tables and bar top are made so that makes it easy for people to talk to each other closely.


Maryann Thompson Architects

741 Mt Auburn Street, Watertown, MA 02472

Maryann Thompson Architects is an architecture firm that works with private and public clients. The firm provides sustainable architecture to bring out the best value on each client’s investment. It is backed by passionate and talented employees from various fields, including landscape architecture, green architecture, planning, interior design, and the visual arts. Their experience, technical knowledge, and skills allow them to deliver exceptional projects that consistently exceed expectations. Founder Maryann Thompson has degrees in architecture and landscape architecture, and brings an interdisciplinary approach to the practice—landscape and environmental issues are at the center of her design process.

One of the firm’s notable projects is the Trade Restaurant and Bar in Boston. The firm turned the corner of the ground floor of the old Russia Wharf into a restaurant and kitchen to create a simple, fresh, and intimate concept. The new, modern touches use warm, natural materials in a contemporary way. The original steel columns with rivets were painted white, and the brick ceilings were sealed and whitewashed so that the building’s original style was revealed.


Cube 3

160 State Street, Floor 6, Boston, MA 02109

Founded in 2003, CUBE 3 has cemented its reputation as a renowned architectural firm across the country thanks to its unique and inventive designs. Over the years, the firm has remained committed to developing thoughtful, individual solutions to various problems in architecture, interior design, and planning. Its impressive portfolio features many projects in more than 25 states across the country, a testament to its superior quality and professionalism. With more than 110 employees, the firm brings years of experience and expertise to give its clients the best possible designs and services. Its comprehensive services include architectural design, code review and analysis, comparative site analysis, conceptual planning, healthy plans, furniture selection, graphic and sign design, interior design, LEED certification, and master planning.

The Salvatore’s Restaurant in Boston is a lively 4,000-square-foot restaurant. Its flexible layout, kitchen design, and service options give customers a range of options for where to eat. It also features a bistro-style take-out area for people looking for a quick bite. In addition to a wide range of dining options, this new place has stunning indoor and outdoor seating as well as a clean, warm design that is both interesting and relaxing.


Hacin + Associates

500 Harrison Avenue, Studio 4F, Boston, MA 02118

Hacin + Associates, an architecture and design studio, was founded in 1993. With almost 30 years of experience, the firm is staffed by a team of professional designers who have worked hard to build an extensive portfolio of projects. Those projects have been praised locally, nationally, and internationally. No matter the project’s size, scope, or complexity, the firm is dedicated to delivering an enjoyable design experience while ensuring successful results that consistently exceed expectations. The firm’s comprehensive services include architecture and interior design, graphic design and branding, adaptive reuse and historic preservation, planning, feasibility studies, and urban design. As a result of its high-quality craftsmanship, cost-efficient designs, and stunning architectural works, the firm has earned plenty of recognition via prestigious local and national awards from the BSA, IIDA, and others.

Shore Leave is a restaurant owned and run by Traveler Street Hospitality. It is about 20 feet below a commercial pharmacy and serves as a place for guests to get away and have fun. The space was designed with a carefully chosen mix of tropical and mid-century modern elements—it’s cheeky, but not disrespectful. The booths, private tables, and three bars can seat about 100 people. In the middle is a dining area partially surrounded by nautical ropes.


RODE Architects

535 Albany Street, #405 Boston, MA 02118

Eric J. Robinson and Kevin S. Deabler founded RODE Architects as a design firm based in Boston, Massachusetts. Since its inception in 2005, the firm has delivered exceptional projects that guarantee satisfaction and exceed expectations. The firm uses an iterative process to turn its clients’ ideas, experiences, and goals into better than common spaces. RODE can offer a wide range of design services thanks to an expert team that offers a variety of skills and expertise. These services include master planning, feasibility surveys, project management, and creative architectural solutions. The firm has put together a design portfolio that includes home additions, housing developments, and learning environments.

Bar Volpe—built for Chef Karen Akunowicz, the James Beard Award winner—captures both the look and feel of the food of Southern Italy. The 5,200-square-foot restaurant has a large dining lounge with room for 110 people, a glass-enclosed pastificio where guests can watch pasta being made, a central bar with 25 seats, and a small wine bar that doubles as a market during the day.


PCA

221 Hampshire Street, Cambridge, MA 02139

Founded in 1982, PCA is known as an industry leader in the Greater Boston area. The firm provides unique business know-how and a creative problem-solving approach to each project as it turns clients’ visions into reality. With expertise in architecture, planning, and interior design, the firm’s impressive portfolio speaks to its ability to deliver thoughtful, award-winning designs that have led to success after success for its clients. Over the past 30 years, PCA has grown from a small office with only four people to a strong company with more than 70 people and a wide range of experience. The firm uses creative design techniques, cost-efficient solutions, and cutting-edge technologies that allow the firm to put a lot of resources into projects while still being easy to reach, focused, and giving the personal service of a smaller firm.

The Pressed Prudential owners wanted to open a new healthy eatery for busy city workers and for people looking for a place to relax and linger. The design team at PCA worked with the owners to make a brand that is easily recognizable and combines their favorite styles with an upscale, urban look. This cozy, one-of-a-kind café space reminds people of Israeli food markets and offers fresh, fast food that has been picked out and made by hand.


Touloukian Touloukian, Inc.

67 Batterymarch Street, Suite #200, Boston, MA 02110

Touloukian Touloukian is an award-winning architecture and urban design firm specializing in complex buildings. The firm’s projects range from new construction to adaptive reuse and include commercial, residential, cultural, institutional, and historical work. Backed by a team of experts, the firm’s one-stop solution allows it to handle the project from start to finish. Its approach to design includes a straightforward narrative that incorporates each client’s goals, the history of the site, and how it can be used sustainably. The firm’s knowledge and leadership skills are strengthened by the fact that it has a wide range of professional experience. The result is an impressive portfolio with exceptional projects and a solid track record of satisfied clients.

Tossed is a new salad restaurant that opened in a space that used to be a business on the first floor of a parking garage. The room was renovated so that it could be used for food. The restaurant’s unique way of serving customers and how it works led to the space’s new layout. Many recycled building materials, low VOC paints, sealants, and stains were used to lessen the impact on the environment, workers, and customers. The new floor-to-ceiling windows bring in plenty of natural light and make the concrete buildings look different.


Merge Architects

332 Congress Street, Floor 6, Boston MA 02210

Merge Architects is an architectural firm that comes up with new ideas for making things. Founded by Elizabeth Whittaker in 2003, the firm is dedicated to finding and taking advantage of opportunities and finding innovation for everyday things. The firm works closely with its clients and teams of fabricators, artists, craftsmen, and engineers to make architecture that embraces the art of making as part of a larger goal: to redefine the urban and social boundaries of the city. Its dedication to understanding its client’s unique vision has resulted in exceptional projects that consistently exceed expectations. Its impressive portfolio includes various projects that showcase its quality, including multi-family residential, commercial, institutional, retail, furniture design, and graphics.

Middlesex Lounge is a bar in Cambridge that has become a high-energy dance club. The open, high-ceilinged space is lined with engineered wood, raw steel, and industrial packing felt to create a tactile and acoustically-specific environment. Custom-made modular benches and tables on wheels make it possible to rearrange them in any way, so every night is different. During the day, the space’s huge, wood-framed storefront on Massachusetts Avenue is a large picture window.


Whitlock Design Group

760 Main Street, Suite #2-4, Waltham, MA 02451

Since its inception in 2000, Whitlock Design Group has quickly become known as a leader in restaurant design. The firm is dedicated to creating memorable atmospheres by putting together interesting materials, new lighting, and stunning colors and textures. The firm’s staff prioritizes listening to the client, so they can understand their clients’ ideas and goals, then turn those ideas into reality. The firm’s impressive portfolio features a vast range of styles and personalities, just like its clients, who are all very different. The firm knows a lot about how restaurants operate, putting a lot of value on making their designs as efficient as possible. It brings as much energy and creativity as possible to complicated projects with complex programs, locations, schedules, and budgets.

One of the firm’s notable projects is the Trillium Brewing Company. It has an open floor plan for the taproom and can be used for private and semi-private events. The rustic design combines a unique mix of natural wooden elements and an earth-toned color scheme, which results in a warm and welcoming atmosphere.


Sousa Design Architects

81 Boylston Street, 2nd Floor, Brookline, MA 02445

Sousa Design Architects is a full-service design firm focusing on architecture, interiors, and graphics. The firm provides a hands-on, meticulous approach to its clients by giving them direct access to the principals, clear lines of communication, and the highest standards of design excellence. Stephen Sousa, the founder, has worked on a wide range of design projects providing years of diverse experience and expertise. Over the years, the firm has gained massive recognition and won many design awards for its residential, hospitality, and retail projects.

One of the firm’s notable projects is Orfan. It is located on the first floor of the Pierce Boston building, which is on Boylston Street. There is a bar with 16 seats, a café with 20 seats, and a dining room. The space features a contemporary design with a unique mix of sleek and sophisticated materials. The large windows bring in plenty of natural light, resulting in a bright and airy feel.

Author

  • Blaine Comeione

    Blaine has served as Editor at Boston Architects for six years, drawing from over ten years of experience in construction and real estate. His comprehensive understanding spans commercial construction, architecture, and home builds, cultivated through diverse roles in the industry. With four years at BuildZoom and a background as a licensed real estate agent, Blaine possesses a unique perspective that enriches his editorial work. His dedication to delivering informative content is underscored by his extensive tenure in the field, ensuring that readers receive valuable insights into the dynamic world of construction and home design. Expertise: Architecture, Commercial Construction, Home Design and Build Key Highlights: Over 6 years of experience writing and editing in the construction space, Editor at HomeBuilderDigest, Previous experience at BuildZoom and Keller Williams Realty Education: Ohio University, Bachelor of Science in Human and Consumer Science with Minor in Business; 120+ Hours of New Jersey Real Estate Education; 120+ Hours of Arizona Real Estate Education