Sereneco had arrived as a contemporary all-day restaurant in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood. A serene urban oasis, the 70-seat American concept occupies the historic Pencil Factory. New York-based design studio Carpenter + Mason led the building’s stylish renovation, and looked to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian community to inform an organic relationship between the architecture and its occupants.

“We designed this space shortly after the quarantine lockdown ended and the importance of our relationships with the outside world was playing heavily in our minds,” says Carpenter + Mason principal Sarah Carpenter. “These are residential projects built in the midcentury so some concepts just don’t transfer easily to a commercial restaurant’s requirements, but we used our research to establish our design priorities: a fluid relationship between exterior and interior, use of natural materials, and importance of light and texture.”

An exterior of reclaimed hemlock and green tile welcomes visitors, while a 15-foot-tall Amstel King Ficus tree wrapped in twinkling lights punctuates the arrival experience alongside a counter clad with rainforest green marble. A soft and natural materiality of wood, plaster, terracotta, and stone complements the interior’s existing brickwork. Abundant greenery further honors the palette as it flourishes in Sereneco’s ample daylighting.

A 25-foot-long white oak bar—reminiscent of a hearth with the façade fully open behind it—functions as the nucleus of the space. Accented by a perimeter of geometric forms, the kitchen is positioned below one of two existing skylights to provide the same warmth bestowed upon guests to the staff as well.

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