Project M Plus partnered with Inland Empire’s very first gastropub, The Salted Pig, to redesign their restaurant for Riverside’s first mixed-use development, Imperial Hardware Lofts.
Originally, owner Ronaldo Fierro imagined The Salted Pig as a ‘rustic public house’ when it first opened in a converted antique store – very much a DIY expression. But to scale, Project M Plus founders McShane and Cleo Murnane knew that a refreshed, playful design for the restaurant was needed to elevate the brand and charm their loyal customers.
Inspired by the building’s Art Deco geometric facade and muted desert landscape, Project M Plus landed on a warm palette to inform the interiors. The result was bringing the natural beauty of the surrounding environment inside, where the warm tones can cultivate a sense of place and coziness.
Honey-colored wooden louvers attach to the cluster of U-shaped, rich leather booths that frame the restaurant, creating intimacy for seated guests. Using arches to soften corners and layer in visual interest, Project M Plus played with warm metallic finishes and contrasting cool sage tiles on the walls to complement the terrazzo bar. They also installed native, desert plants as sculptural focal points. Painting the lofted ceiling in a burst of brick red, M Plus accented with muted blush and green throughout, and added a copper-clad bar for a cohesive, unexpected material palette that is transporting and altogether satisfying.