• Featured,  Relish

    Fine design

    In November 2017, Prime + Proper, a luxurious steakhouse experience, opened in Detroit, and quickly garnered attention for its elaborate interior design and approach to fine dining. Less than two years later in June 2019, McIntosh Poris Associates, the firm behind Prime + Proper’s distinctive style and preserved historic details, received a pair of Restaurant Design Awards from the AIA’s Los Angeles chapter—the only Midwest-based firm to do so during the 2019 award program. The People’s Choice: Restaurant award and Citation: Restaurant award, were supported by a jury verdict that cites Prime + Proper’s “opulence and decadence” as winning factors in the restaurant’s downtown Detroit setting. For Michael Poris, founder…

  • Featured,  Form

    Embodied carbon

    In May 2019, the overall value of construction work done in the United States totaled more than $1.29 billion, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Value of Construction Put in Place Survey. In the same month, Michigan’s second largest city, Grand Rapids, spent $13 million on new construction alone and has undergone some measures to ensure a sustainable future in tandem with its continuing developmental upswing. It is one district among a network of urban areas participating in the 2030 Challenge for Planning, which is a national initiative focused on carbon-neutrality, and cutting water usage and transportation emissions in half by 2030. To continue the effort, the United States Green…

  • Featured,  Relish

    La Crême

    Charming and fresh, stepping into La Crême café is not unlike walking into a French crêperie, where serving thin, pancake-like crêpes is a defining characteristic. Located in Zeeland, Michigan, the Parisian-style creamery and crêpe shop was started by Scott and Kim De Young after they were inspired by warm spaces with specialized menus on the west coast of Oregon. As their kids got older, they decided to make the dream come alive, and brought it with them to West Michigan. Before La Crême was the inviting breakfast and lunch spot that it is now, Scott and Kim De Young owned a frozen yogurt shop, called Fuzzy Peach, in the same…

  • Form,  Relish

    Spatialized success

    For the design-make architecture studio of Synecdoche Design Studio in Ann Arbor, Michigan, design is a key ingredient that can be used to spatialize a business model, according to Principal Architect Lisa Sauve, AIA, NCARB, ASID, IIDA. The studio was recently recognized for its skills in the area—this concept of giving spatial form or consideration of in space relations—with an award for best low-budget project at the 2019 AIA Michigan Honor Awards Ceremony in June for its transformation of Thrive Juicery in Ann Arbor. The design of the approximately 1,800-square-foot interior was informed by the juicery’s core values—health and wellness—around which Synecdoche rotated a variety of tools for creating custom…

  • Form

    Placemaking

    A full-service architectural practice in Grand Rapids, Michigan approaches sustainability through a modernist lens. The Grand Rapids, Michigan-based architectural and planning—and recently, interior design—firm of Mathison|Mathison Architects has become known for its creation of elevated-modern, high-profile homes throughout the United States. Yet, Evan Mathison, co-founding principal architect, noted there are some who may not realize the firm’s breadth of award-winning commercial projects in its portfolio that highlight an affinity for sustainable and experiential design solutions. From sculptural public pavilions that interpret the concept of shelter, to renovations fusing historic design with modern sustainability; many Mathison|Mathison Architects, or MMA, projects create meaningful experiences among space, structure, and user—and ameliorate the natural…

  • Featured,  Form

    Shingle-style adaptive

    When creating a new residence, adaptability is a valuable term during each stage of the process, especially for the architect, whose task is to deliver a home balancing practical and aesthetic goals. Sometimes a difficult task, achieving this ideal balance can also be highly memorable and, in the case of the team of designers at Sears Architects, something that is reflected on during other projects for years to come. Sears Architects, an architectural and planning firm in Grand Rapids, Michigan, was the design team behind a 2013 residential project on the city’s eastern side that highlighted the firm’s affinity for producing adaptable designs—an element that continues to distinguish it in…

  • Featured,  Form

    Illuminating design

    For more than 50 years, the Kendall Lighting Center—a member of the Kendall Group—has supplied communities in northern Indiana and West Michigan with lighting products and fixtures featuring the latest in industry trends and technologies. Recently, the lighting center’s first showroom location in Grand Rapids, Michigan was joined by four additional showroom locations to create an expanded source for lighting collections and design inspiration. The Kendall Group began as Kendall Electric in the early 1970s, later growing to include six divisions—including the Kendall Lighting Center—that position it as a wholesale supplier serving the electrical, lighting, automation, and steam industries, among others. Its stance in industrial variety translates to the Kendall…

  • Featured,  Relish,  Travel

    Hint of summer

    The visual summer landscape of northern Michigan is often matched by its flavors. Crops like tomatoes, fresh greens, and Traverse City’s famed cherry varietals bloom in time for a vibrant tourist season and at Aerie Restaurant & Lounge, the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa’s acclaimed high-rise restaurant, its flavors will be captured in a Taste of Summer menu set to debut on May 27th and end on June 2, 2019. Bryan Petrick, head chef at Aerie Restaurant and Lounge, said the $35, three-course menu is a way to kick off the summer after an unpredictable winter—and its effects on Traverse City Restaurant Week—and a prequel for flavors to come during…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured,  Travel

    Center for arts

    Nearly a year ago, northern Michigan gained a world-class performing arts complex and venue that continues to provide the area with a meeting space for regional arts communities and internationally-acclaimed artists. The Great Lakes Center for the Arts has been called a big city experience on the shoreline of Little Traverse Bay in Bay Harbor, Michigan, and its architecture, technological features, and overall mission position it as such among the Midwest’s centers for art and entertainment.  Designed by architecture, design, and engineering practice TowerPinkster, the nearly $25 million structure was part of a community cultural plan nearly 20 years in the making, which specified a need for an additional state-of-the-art…