Terroni Los Angeles

National City Bank Reimagined

Housed in the very well-preserved National City Bank building of 1924 in the heart of LA’s Deco Downtown district, Terroni DTLA combines meticulously detailed, authentic new materials with the exposed robust elements of the historic architecture of its host. Our eclectic ‘cassareccia’ Terroni approach is necessarily scaled-up here to match the grandeur of the vintage bank hall. The main design challenge was to create distinct, intimate dining and bar experiences within the single large volume and its restored and untouchable surfaces.

Located at Spring & 8th & Main, the restaurant has monumental, street-front windows on three sides. Various areas of intimate dining underneath the grandeur of the 30-foot high space are achieved by embracing elements that surround booths and banquettes with high, exterior wood shells, and upholstered inner seating. Never beyond shoulder height, the installations still allow for the dramatic space to be omnipresent. It is at the new mechanical mezzanine where articulated walls of three-dimensional graphics and large glass prosciutto refrigerators flank the bank hall.

“Located in the National City Bank building at 8th and Spring, the new restaurant embraces the building’s historic architectural details and adds a contemporary twist.” Walter P. Moore

Key to the definition of the main dining room is the demising, layered screen, adorned with plaster and punched metal installation that functions as the ‘back-bar’ along the main bar that transforms from service bar, to cocktail bar, to brunch bar, to coffee bar along a sculpted CNC carved stone to wood face.

CNC carved white oak at open kitchen.

Three distinct custom light fixtures define three characteristic areas of the hospitality experience, including the last installment of the Terroni triptych of race-track chandeliers. The first at Terroni Adelaide inspired by Pista di Fiorano, the second at Terroni Price Street inspired by the Autodromo di Imola, and the third here at Terroni DTLA inspired by Autodromo Nazionale Monza whose calculated curves sit in charged contrast to the gilded coffered ceiling of 1924.

The ‘Monza’ light, in our racetrack series, is modelled after the historic racetrack in Monza, just north of Milan, Italy.

Past the main dining room is a second smaller space that could serve as a private dining room with a long communal table organized under a crafted leather chevron ceiling that culminates in a vintage chandelier centred on a special round ‘chef’s table.’ Original stairs to the restaurant’s second floor leads to another private dining area and a glazed wine room.

The restaurant has now brought the same dining DNA, as well as its penchant for a Gio Ponti-meets-Carlo Mollino mid- century Italian design aesthetic, to a super-sized second outpost in an ornate former bank building in downtown LA’s continually gentrifying Historic Core district. Terroni LA has been awarded the AIA / LA Restaurant Design Awards for Excellence, as well as, the LABC Los Angeles Architectural Award of Excellence.

Project Facts

  • Client

    Terroni Restaurants

  • Location

    Los Angeles, California

  • Size

    6,500 sq. ft.

  • Status


  • Affiliate Architect

    Architect of Record — Blueprint Management & Construction Inc.

  • Sub-Consultant Team

    Structural — Basso Engineering

    Kitchen — Tepper Design and Equipment

    Mechanical — BASSO Engineering Inc.

    Electrical — M&S Electrical Engineering Inc.

  • General Contractor

    Marshall Group

  • Photography

    Andrew Leeson

  • Artist / Graphics

    Graphic Design & Signage — Small Project Studio