Black-and-whitefloors, lush greenery and touches of pink, blue and brass await at the newly opened — and utterly chic — Porta Via Palisades.
The design-forward California eatery, a sister restaurant of Beverly Hills-based Porta Via, features a mix of influences ranging from French bistros to the coastal style of the Hamptons and Nantucket.
Materials were key to achieving the vision, orchestrated by Los Angeles-based Sophie Goineau. “The-black-and-white floor is classic way of doing a French bistro floor,” says the designer of the Pacific Palisades location. She created a twist on the quintessential style by placing Jewels Select porcelain tile by Mirage in stripes rather than the typical checkered design.
Goineau also carefully considered the metals and woods (“noble materials,” she calls them). The chevron white oak walls keep the atmosphere light and airy, and infuse an American coastal vibe. “On the East coast the restaurants all have wood walls,” says Goineau. “They use marina boat materials.”
Meanwhile, classic style reigns supreme with the furnishings. “Respecting the core values of a bistro was important,” Goineau says. Dining chairs sourced from Design Within Reach are a 1920s style by Josef Hoffmann and Josef Frank for Thonet. The Pedrali black table bases with custom walnut-and-brass tops nod to a casual European elegance.
Touches of nostalgia are found throughout the setting. “Everybody can have their ‘this reminds me of this’ moment,” the designer observes, noting “Porta Via Palisades triggers memories.” She points to the custom bar stools, fabricated by Linea P International and upholstered in pink Elmo Nordic leather, that reference the country club style of the 1980s. “We all wore pink during the preppy period,” she laughs.
The designer also notes the floor brings to mind the stripes on the American and French flags, as well those striped boatneck shirts that epitomize both midcentury French style and that of those who summer in Nantucket. The teal-blue linen upholstery of the custom banquette, too, infuses impressions of the sea, and since Los Angeles is the land of forever summer, Goineau ensured a seamless indoor-outdoor connection by continuing the black-and-white floor out onto the patio.
“It makes you feel good as a whole,” the designer says of the restaurant. “My goal is to trigger something pleasurable. I like people to feel something.”