Site logo

Crossings Restaurant

This beautiful project is an adaptive reuse of one of South Pasadena's most notable historic resources: the Edwards and Faw Building on Mission Street. Originally a subdivided retail-ground-floor and subdivided office-second-floor, both floors were opened up to provide a unique two-story, with a split-level wine cellar, fine dining restaurant in South Pasadena's Mission Street District.

The Program
Downstairs features the Front Dining, adjacent to Mission Street. The Kitchen, Food Prep, and Dishwashing areas comprise the remainder of the first floor, along with Restroom facilities. Adjacent to the Kitchen is the Downstairs Bar, which parallels the main public access to the Back Patio. Upstairs features a matching Upstairs Front Dining and Bar, and a Back Dining area adjacent to the server access. Separate restroom facilities complete the upstairs. Dividing the two spaces is a unique split-level Wine Cellar, partially elevated into the second floor, becoming the elevated booth seating upstairs.

Design Challenges
An early requirement was to make the restaurant uniquely South Pasadena in its design and character, while still maintaining a distinctive fine dining experience. The solution was to visually open the restaurant to two of the City's most recognizable features—historic Mission Street and the Metro Gold Line adjacent to the outdoor patio. By removing storefront-hiding swings and making the downstairs one continuous space, the urban charm of Mission Street becomes a dynamic and glowing back-drop for diners. The back patio, sheltered beneath a 100-year old oak tree, derives its rhythm and energy from the passing Gold Line trains stopping at the Gold Line station a few hundred feet away.

GAW_Highlight Long
Dining and Public Spaces
Working off our project Image Boards, the all-new interior construction features materials and techniques more akin to classic 1940's design than a contemporary restaurant. Echoing off the original brick masonry and black storefront system, a steel-and-glass wine cellar was placed above the Kitchen, which provided additional structural bracing (facilitating complete interior wall removal). A wood, steel, and-glass stairway system echoed this theme, and was complimented with a warm color palette and special furnishings.
Stacks Image 5827
Crossings: Main Entry
The steel-glass-and-wood main stair can be seen through the front entry. Existing exposed brick masonry provides a warm texture that pervades the design palette, complimented by the extensive use of steel and glass.
Stacks Image 5836
Crossings: Main Dining
A broad panorama showing (l-r) Mission Street, the Main Dining area, the open Kitchen, Downstairs Bar, Passage, and Rear Patio beyond. The split-level steel-and-glass Wine Cellar, above the Kitchen, wraps around and above the Downstairs Bar, and provides additional lateral strength for the existing brick masonry walls.
Stacks Image 5845
Crossings: Downstairs Bar
Adjacent to the Passage (center-left) and open to the Kitchen is the Downstairs Bar. Above can be seen the steel-and-glass Wine Cellar, while beyond, Mission Street forms a dynamic urban backdrop for the Main Dining area.
Stacks Image 5854
Crossings: Main Stair
A view from the open Kitchen towards the Main Stair. Removing the awning system (which carried down to the door height), window coverings, and the main dividing wall opened up the entire first floor to form one continuous space—Mission Street, the Main Dining area, and the open Kitchen. Warm existing brick masonry, steel-and-glass framing, and a warm color palette create a warm, yet dynamic, environment.
Stacks Image 5863
Crossings: Dining looking East
This view, from the front door and the Main Stair, features the relationship between the open Kitchen, Main Dining area, and the Wine Cellar. The Main Dining area features 14' tall ceilings and distinctive lighting features, and derives its energy from the open Kitchen on one side, and dynamic Mission Street on the other.
Stacks Image 5872
Crossings: Dining to Wine Cellar
In this photograph we get a true sense of what it's like to enjoy a meal in the Main Dining area. Beyond, and to the left, is the Main Stair, featuring translucent reed-glass panels set between metal frames. Above the open Kitchen is the steel-and-glass Wine Cellar—entered from a landing atop the first run of stairs—whose full height acts as a base for the booth seating on the second floor.
Stacks Image 5881
Crossings: Stair Landing
This view is from the Back Dining looking along the Main Stair back towards Mission Street. Below is the intermediate Landing, which leads to the Wine Cellar on the left that acts as a split-level space between the two main floors. Above is the Front Dining area, while below right, one of the bracing steel beams ties both dining areas together to the existing brick masonry walls. This very complicated and unique space solved three major problems—build a full-height wine cellar, reinforce the existing brick masonry walls, while creating a distinct, yet open and connected, sequence of spaces.
Stacks Image 5890
Crossings: Stair Landing and Plinth
Another view of the Main Stair, Landing, Wine Cellar and plinth. The Wine Cellar's ceiling forms the base for the plinth and upstairs raised Booth, and also acts as a spacial divider between the Front and Back Dining areas. Dark painted wood echoes the design's steel frame aesthetic, and the abundant use of exposed brick masonry can be seen carried continuously between floors.

Stacks Image 5899
Crossings: Plinths and Booths
Standing at the Front Dining booths, another view of the relationship between the Landing, Wine Cellar, Plinth, and Back Dining can be seen. Below left, a recessed bookshelf conceals access to the storage Mezzanine (see Mezzanine Plan), while below right the door to the Wine Cellar, set below the booth seating, can be just barely seen. Beyond, the Back Dining is separated from the Main Stair by interior double-hung windows, echoing the original double-hung second floor windows.
Stacks Image 5908
Crossings: Upstairs Booths
The Front Dining can be seen in the foreground, with the elevated booth seating formed by the ceiling of the Wine Cellar below. Beyond, the dividing wall between the Main Stair and Back Dining features interior double-hung windows, separating the Back Dining area from the Main Stair. The abundant use of exposed brick masonry can clearly be seen—juxtaposed against a palette of slate grey, black, and warm leather.
Stacks Image 5917
Crossings: Dining Patio
Standing at the entrance to the Dining Patio, the majestic 100 year-old oak tree forms a natural ceiling for the al fresco diners eating below. The ipe wood fence, beyond, separates the property from the Gold Line tracks, and along with the coral color of the neighboring building, provides a warm, soothing, and intimate backdrop.
Stacks Image 5926
Crossings: Wine Cellar
The unique Wine Cellar is set split-level between floors and atop the open Kitchen. Raising to roughly chest height, the steel-and-glass perimeter is completely open to the Main Dining and Downstairs Bar below, while the remaining ceiling height acts as a base for the booth seating above.

GAW_Highlight Long
Kitchen, Bar, and Service Areas
The open Kitchen sits in the center of the ground floor, open to the front dining, with spaces dedicated to preparation, storage, clean-up, and utilities residing behind it. Two circulation patterns were developed, one for guest circulation and the other for service circulation, accessing both floors and the back patio separately. The downstairs bar, adjacent to the Kitchen, allows customers to watch food being prepared and perhaps sharing a conversation with Chef Lalo. The upstairs bar is completely autonomous, with its own dishwashing and ice machines, effectively providing glassware for the entire upstairs spaces.
Stacks Image 6247
Kitchen and Bar
Description coming soon...
Stacks Image 6256
Open Kitchen
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6265
Upstairs Bar
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6274
Busser Station and Back Stair
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6283
Back Stair and Server Access
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6292
Three Compartment Sink
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6301
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6310
Food Prep
Description coming soon...

Stacks Image 6319
Food Prep and Ovens
Description coming soon...

GAW_Highlight Long
Drawings and Image Boards
The floor plans show the relationships of the project's complex program elements—blue keynotes are public spaces, while red are service and employee. Our Image Boards and Concept Renderings were a powerful tool establishing early-on the look and feel of the project, and aided us in selecting final finishes and fixtures key to the project's success.

Stacks Image 6664
First Floor Plan
Stacks Image 6673
Second Floor Plan
Stacks Image 6682
Mezzanine Plan
Stacks Image 6691
Image Board - Title Page
Stacks Image 6700
Image Board - First Floor Elements
Stacks Image 6709
Image Board - Second Floor Elements
Stacks Image 6718
Image Board - Restrooms
Stacks Image 6727
Image Board - Outdoor Patio
Stacks Image 6736
Concept Renderings
Stacks Image 6745
Concept Renderings