Restaurateur Bruce Carey on His Approach to Interior Design and Creating Ambience

Restaurateur Bruce Carey on His Approach to Interior Design and Creating Ambience

By Alisa Sloan, Foodable Contributor

Not sure if it’s common Portland knowledge, but Clarklewis is here thanks to Bruce Carey, who also brought us 23Hoyt, Saucebox, and Bluehour. He has created an elegant Small Kingdom with some of Portland’s most notable restaurants, and still takes the time every week to do the flowers before they take the chairs down.

I found him, early one morning, arranging flowers at Bluehour. He had trimmed down a mock orange tree, hauled the branches into the restaurant, and was plotting the reworking of yard debris into an installation of oversized vases. And since I had him all to myself, it was time to get the scoop on what inspired his design choices, and how he achieves that louche yet simplified drama in his interiors.

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