Best Project

Owner Matsuhisa Denver LLC
Lead Design Rowland + Broughton Architecture & Urban Planning
MEP Engineer Boulder Engineering
General Contractor Haselden Construction

Matsuhisa Denver is an upscale Japanese restaurant on the street level of Steele Creek, a luxury apartment building in the heart of Denver’s Cherry Creek neighborhood. The restaurant features a 3,000-sq-ft commercial kitchen and 4,800 sq ft of space for the main dining room, private dining rooms, liquor bar, sushi bar, Zen garden and wine room.

The large sushi bar affords guests a good view of the chefs at work, while exclusive private-dining sections provide more secluded settings for group events. The restaurant offers delivery services to the Steele Creek apartments located above it, also built by Haselden Construction.

Extensive use of reclaimed teak wood throughout the interior creates an elegant setting, and the Zen garden has a waterfall that flows from the ceiling, designed to be a calming element. The windows are adorned with laser-cut screens that allow light inside while giving patrons privacy from pedestrians.

The design blends Japanese and Colorado elements, and the innovation lies in their juxtaposition. The Zen garden rock was inspired by a Japanese artist, selected from a local supplier and quarried in Colorado. The bar area has TVs for sports fans but fits with the Zen feel because the TVs retract into the ceiling, hiding them when not in use. Even the bottle storage area in the bar mixes industrial steel with teak wood, two highly contrasting materials blended together to create a cohesive look.

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