TWELVE Restaurant


Portland, ME




3,300 SF


Foreside Development Company


Bruner Cott


© Wenjin Wu

A once abandoned factory building, has now evolved into a charming Michelin-star rated restaurant, welcoming Maine locals and foodies alike. A diamond in the rough, the Owners could see potential in salvaging this 127-year-old brick building. Their decision was to move this structure, originally further inland, to the more serene waterfront locale. In preparation for the move, the Architects and construction team laser scanned the building, tore down the entire structure, and then rebuilt the beloved “Twelve” brick-by-brick at its new more public facing home.

For the Owner, it was of utmost importance to weave the lighting into the architectural fabric of this venerable building. “Make the atmosphere glow like a fireplace” they said. Working alongside the Architects, it was important to mindfully illuminate the salvaged wood flooring, locally hand-crafted furniture, and artwork with discreet, glare-free fixture hardware.

Wherever you are seated, you are sure to experience the restaurant’s soft and radiant glow, wrapping you in a warm cozy embrace of light. Large-scale decorative pendants with mostly indirect lighting act as an art piece and an illuminator for the open dining environment.

The front of the bar die is highlighted with discretely integrated lights and the bar counter is marked with portable table lamps marching across the counter, providing lighting for the bar top and adding sparkle to cocktails and the evening.

The open kitchen is intended to be presented as prominently as the custom seashell artwork on the walls. It is important to illuminate the display kitchen to celebrate the chefs and the culinary food preparation. The space becomes an unspoken dialogue between chef and diner.

Multi-scene controls were curated for different moods between lunch, dinner, and late-night dining. Whether you sit at the enticing bar or the alluring dining room, you’ll take home a memorable experience with you.

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