Bentonville CO-OP Ramen Restaurant, Arkansas Commercial Interior, American architecture images, AR building design

CO-OP Ramen Restaurant in Bentonville

post updated March 20, 2024

Design: Marlon Blackwell Architects

Location: 801 SE 8th Street, Bentonville, Arkansas, United States of America

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

Photos by Timothy Hursley

June 30, 2020

CO-OP Ramen Restaurant

Marlon Blackwell Architects (MBA) is the designer behind the new 2,000 square foot fast casual CO-OP Ramen Restaurant, in the 8th Street Market. Located in a reimagined disused food processing plant, 8th Street Market is a community-focused food hub and part of the reinvention of downtown Bentonville into a vibrant destination for locals and visitors.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

Blackwell and his team used simple and unrefined materials for CO-OP Ramen, such as concrete masonry units and plywood, which they assembled in an unexpected composition, creating a visually arresting interior.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

The view of the restaurant from the exterior storefront windows is filtered through a continuous length of steel beaded curtain, which reflects and softens the light and delays the full experience of the space until one enters.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

Embracing the Japanese notion of wabi-sabi, which celebrates the asymmetries and imperfections in natural and unrefined objects, MBA used construction quality plywood, a simple material which was elevated by employing careful joinery and edge detailing.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

A highlight in the space are the generously-spaced booths with full-height partitions rising between them, creating a feeling of being seated inside a cave, where diners are tucked away into a private space. Passing through this compressed articulated space, guests are released into a spacious communal seating area, spatially connected beneath a deeply coffered plywood ceiling.

The recessed light fixtures allow for an interplay of light and shadow across the entire space. Surrounded by carefully laid concrete block walls, softened by a 12 ft tall living green wall, guests can watch the chefs at work in the open kitchen, creating refined versions of simple food, itself a celebration of the same spirit of wabi-sabi.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

Of the process of designing CO-OP, Meryati Blackwell, Principal and Director of Interiors says “The design began with listening to our client, Rob Apple, the former CEO of Ropeswing Hospitality Group. He wanted to advance the idea of an Ozark ramen house, by taking the idea of Japanese ramen comfort food and adding a local Arkansas twist; such as an addition of fried chicken to the ramen bowl. It was his vision that we brought to life; an atmosphere that is welcoming, never alienating, yet sophisticated and a reflection of our local culture”.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

About Marlon Blackwell Architects
Since 1992, Marlon Blackwell Architects has designed award-winning, environmentally responsive projects for its clients. The firm believes that architecture can happen anywhere, at any scale, at any budget – for anyone – which results in challenging the conventions and models that often obscure other possibilities. As an agile, full service design firm, MBA advocates a participatory, collaborative design process between the client, contractors, and architect, where all voices are heard from conceptualization to the realization of each project.

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

In every instance, the firm strives to express the richness of place and the ideals of its people and institutions. The office of Marlon Blackwell Architects received the 2016 Cooper Hewitt National Design Award in Architecture. Blackwell is the recipient of the 2020 AIA Gold Medal and has just been named the 2020 SEC Professor of the Year.

Architect and Builder: Marlon Blackwell Architects

Co-Op Ramen Restaurant Bentonville Ar

Photographer: Timothy Hursley

CO-OP Ramen Restaurant in Bentonville, AR images / information received 300620

Address: 801 SE 8th St, Bentonville, AR 72712, United States
Phone: +1 479-250-0474

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