Berlin’s immense new restaurant Pauly Saal has all the grandness of a historical fortification, without the austerity. That’s because the building, originally constructed in 1928, used to be a Jewish girls’ school. Its handsomely refined decor, combined with a stellar palate-pleasing menu, makes for the kind of school reform we’re completely in favor of.
The global trend of morphing old derelict structures into modern hot spots is a visible enough one our side of the Atlantic too, but Europe’s got us beat in the history-mining department. Whether it’s the venue itself or its surrounding buildings, the juxtaposition of the various centuries through this architectural blend of old-meets-new is simply more striking.
Another example, the newly opened Stork Restaurant, inhabits a portion of a former industrial complex on Amsterdam’s northern waterfront that’s undergoing a major return to form by way of new shops, eateries, and start-up businesses. Pieter van der Pot of CUBE Architecten and Marloes van Heteren of SOLUZ Architecten, who were commisioned to redevelop the entire 30,000-square-meter area, set their sights on completing Stork first, maintaining the basic premise that all it takes is one buzzy new eatery to forge the path to a hot new destination. And as Europe’s largest seafood restaurant, it’s been hard to overlook.
With the exception of expanding the windows to allow for more natural light, the team maintained much of Stork’s original structure, both inside and out, while design firm Interior Shock utilized old factory components like cable reels and fixtures for the decor.
Scroll down for visuals and more on both these awesome dinner destinations.