Who doesn’t love a good makeover? For The Blue Door, their new restaurant in San Jose, CA, restaurateurs Pete and Silvia Foundas hired Oakland-based architecture and design firm Arcsine to transform a dated and kitschy Chevy’s Fresh Mex unit in San Jose into a sophisticated, contemporary and comfortable Greek concept.
The Foundases wanted the restaurant to evoke their favorite resort destinations in Southern Greece. The outcome? It’s hard to argue with Arcsine’s description of The Blue Door as a “tasteful sanctuary of Mediterranean cuisine.”
Take a look at the striking before-and-after images.
Before: Standard chain
This San Jose Chevy's unit closed in 2014.
After: A fresh facade
The Blue Door’s rectangular white exterior calls to mind modern Greece, say the architects at Oakland-based firm, Arcsine.
Before: Old entryway
The Chevy’s entryway loudly and clearly said “Tex Mex.”
After: Azure accents
A Mediterranean blue front door and hostess desk evoke the Grecian coast. Further inside, dark and painted woods keep the environment warm and approachable, while the neutral color palate creates a contemporary feel.
Before: Dated dining room
Chevy’s dining room was bright and colorful, but not at all what The Blue Door owners were looking for.
After: Inviting and striking
The large main dining room is divided into three sections by a wood pergola, allowing the spaces to feel intimate while remaining well-lit and open. Water jet-cut aluminum screens decorate the ends of the pergola.
Before: Divided spaces
The interior reconstruction included the removal of interior walls, lighting and flooring.
After: Private dining
The elegant private dining room features clean, contemporary millwork and warm, residential elements, including floor-to-ceiling drapes.
Before: Hard seating
Chevy's bar tables and chairs served their purpose, but the owners of The Blue Door wanted something more luxurious.
After: Stay a while
The dessert lounge features comfortable residential-style seating in front of a fireplace with stone cladding and a wood hewn mantel.
Before: Casual and cluttered
The Chevy’s bar was outdated and busy.
After: Contemporary and clean
The large bar features a stone backsplash and well-lit and contemporary display shelves. “This gives the space a comfortable homelike ambiance while maintaining a modern sensibility,” according to Arcsine.
The Blue Door inherited a tired, but spacious, outdoor patio with room for 84 seats.
After: Outdoor oasis
A contemporary fireplace and swaths of fabric draped over an outdoor pergola aim to "make the al fresco diner feel like they are among the cascading architecture of Santorini." Opa!