Coffee For Sasquatch

Mar 15, 2018 - Los Angeles, CA


Client: Claire Ackad

Location: 7020 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, CA

Size: 1,200 square feet

Program: Complete interior renovation, including new storefront, espresso bar, signage, seating, service areas, two bathrooms, back of house, and storage service areas, two bathrooms, back of house, and storage 

Design: Dan Brunn Architecture (DBA) transformed an existing bare space into the first Coffee For Sasquatch location by implementing a playful, modern design.  The Melrose Avenue coffee shop creates a mystical environment evoking the forest where Sasquatch lives.  The front of the store features an outline of the hairy folkloric creature with surrounding real living greenery to add depth and texture to the space.  The service counter, finished in beechwood, extends from the plantings to symbolize a growing tree branch from the forest.  A mix of materials and an abstract mural continue the essence of the wilderness and create a visually dynamic environment.  Custom-designed built-in seating curves along the walls and coffee bar to provide comfortable spaces for eating, drinking, and socializing.  These distinctive elements are clearly visible through the new storefront to create an iconic image for the shop along the street.  

Upon entry, customers are welcomed by an 11-foot-tall representation of the brand’s Sasquatch logo made of brown powder-coated steel and set within a seven-inch-deep living plant wall.  Sasquatch, known for being predominately frightening, serves as the shop’s friendly mascot to greet and intrigue patrons.  The living green wall, designed in collaboration with Habitat Horticulture, features a range of plant species inspired by the natural forest, such as Velvet Leaf Philodendron, Male Fern, Blue Star Polypodium, Southern Maiden Hair Fern, Button Fern, and Norfolk Island Pine. 

From the entrance, customers are drawn in by a central axis accentuated by light and volume.  This catwalk-like path ignites a feeling of movement and appears to elongate the space.  A Barrisol ceiling stretches over LED lights to create an ethereal glow above the pathway.  The ceiling is designed as an inverted pitched roof to create a sense of endless height.  Flowing artificial vines hang from the light coves in the coffee shop, as well as in the bathrooms, for additional greenery and mystery in the space. 


The beechwood service counter represents a tree branch emerging from the forest and seamlessly extends through merchandise and food display cases to an integral bench where coffee lovers can relax while waiting for their orders.  DBA designed this bench and bar area to encourage employee interaction and engagement with customers.  Rather than hide baristas from view, the scale and form of the coffee bar serve to invite dialogue.  A variety of materials has been used to add texture to the space, such as the natural beechwood counter, terrazzo floors and seating areas, and “Calacatta Nuvo” Caesarstone on the coffee bar, backsplash, and menu board.  Custom-designed menu graphics provide easy visibility on both sides of the board. 

In contrast to the sharp lines of the path, the built-in seating areas at the heart of the coffee shop are defined by flowing, curved surfaces of poured-in-place terrazzo.  Curved-wood chairs designed and manufactured by the Swedish company Hem in European beech extend the forest theme.  DBA custom-designed beechwood tables with soft angles to tie the curves of the chairs and seating built-ins together. 

On the wall opposite from the Sasquatch vertical garden, a site-specific, hand-painted abstract mural created by Oakland-based artist Hueman evokes the mystery of the forest.  Titled The Mist, the image features grey cloud forms, along with geometric shapes, to represent the unknown and secretive world inhabited by the giant creature.  The light-colored walls and ceiling form a pale envelope to showcase the mural, living wall, wood furniture, and surfaces within the interior. 

Firm: Los Angeles-based Dan Brunn Architecture, founded in 2005 by Dan Brunn, AIA, develops commercial and residential projects worldwide.  Brunn utilizes provocative spatial choreography to harmonize light with volume.  Inspired by the Bauhaus architecture of his native Tel Aviv, he reinterprets Modernist principles in minimalist designs for living, shopping, and dining.  Brunn’s portfolio includes furniture design that addresses the needs of living room, bedroom, and bath with highly functional, sophisticated, and streamlined solutions.   

Brought to you by

The Bridge House

Dan Brunn Architecture is a multidisciplinary architecture firm that designs and develops projects worldwide. Formed in 2005 by award-winning Principal, Dan Brunn, DBA prides itself on crafting architecture that respects the site and provokes a sensuous interaction with the environment. DBA focuses on purposeful modernism that heightens the user’s understanding and connection with the space. Every project DBA creates is dedicated to clean modernism, where function is purposeful and aesthetic becomes inherent. The synergy of the two creates unique, timeless and truly experiential spaces.

At DBA, we transform the traditional and offer creative solutions to various typologies. DBA’s young, energetic team is highly involved with each project from entitlements to the end of construction. At DBA, we are eager to work with each client’s needs and desires, while providing the best design possible. Each project is a highly evolved avant-garde, one of a kind design.

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