First Look: Lofty Ambitions

Interior designer David Cafiero, proprietor of homeware mecca Cafiero Select, just designed his first restaurant: Mark Stern’s Prandial (31 W. 21st St., nr. Sixth Ave.; 212-510-8722). The 4,500-square-foot-space was once a soul-food restaurant owned by Sean Combs. When Cafiero initially approached the venue, it had a very different vibe: “It was dark and basically boarded up, but the general feeling I got was, Wow, this is amazing,” he says. Here’s the front entrance with a view toward the main dining area. The private room at the rear of the restaurant is for parties and meetings. Alex Locadia fabricated both the host desk and the glass entry. Photo: Matthew Sandager

This is a view toward the downstairs restrooms and lounge area. The entire space is designed in the style of a Flatiron loft. Cafiero says the building’s exposed beams and water pipes were a “gift of the highest order.” Photo: Matthew Sandager

Prandial feels grand and clubby, like an old-school ocean liner. The leather banquets, made by Munrod, are key to this aesthetic. Photo: Matthew Sandager

The restaurant is bathed in light from an array of fixtures. This patina-bronze wall sconce has a black silk shade. It came from a lighting store in Stamford. Photo: Matthew Sandager

Cafiero made this large industrial lamp, and the hanging pendant lights are from School House Electric. Photo: Matthew Sandager

Cafiero loves to go hunting for repurposable treasures at flea markets, demolition sites, and antique stores. When he heard that a Victorian house he used to visit in New Bedford was being demolished, he pounced: “I grabbed all I could and had the corbels fashioned into wall sconces,” he says. Photo: Matthew Sandager

The marble counter at the front of the restaurant is the perfect place to relax with a cocktail and do some “people watching.” The walls are covered with sheet metal with an I-Beam used as a drink rail. Photo: Matthew Sandager

Cafiero personally polished this copper wall to restore the sheen. Photo: Matthew Sandager

Check out the powder room for another example of Cafiero’s expert repurposing skills. He found the magnificent porcelain sink at Demolition Depot and rerigged the piping. Photo: Matthew Sandager

First Look: Lofty Ambitions