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Inspired by traditional Korean screens, this Southern Californian restaurant creates a world of depth in a small space

Cosmic Beauty

Inspired by traditional Korean screens, this Southern Californian restaurant creates a world of depth in a small space

An array of sconces cover nested arched ceilings that add depth to the storefront Haewah Dal space. (Louis Trinh)

The peach-hued interior of Korean restaurant Haewah Dal sits on one of Long Beach, California’s main drags. The small, sophisticated space, designed by New York firm o-n, uses a series of curved frames that nest like a Russian doll to enclose the eatery’s dining room. These sculpted elements turn what could have been a long, narrow extrusion into a complex space that feels like much more than a street-facing storefront.

“We drew inspiration from irworobongdo, a traditional decorative screen that featured prominently during Korea’s Joseon dynasty,” o-n principal Davis Owen said. “We were intrigued by the efficiency of this type of screen and how it collapses an immense depth of space.”

Visit the neon-soaked restaurant on our interiors and design website, aninteriormag.com.

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