Scandinavian Design Defines Aquavit’s New Digs

This month, New York’s Aquavit reopened in a new location and with a significant redesign; now the restaurant’s celebrated, traditional Swedish cuisine is complemented by classic, mid-century Scandinavian furniture. Owner Håkan Swahn has long been passionate about the style, personally purchasing many of Aquavit’s vintage Danish tabletop items—including wooden ice buckets and serving trays—on eBay.

“This is stuff which has withstood the test of time,” Swahn says of the restaurant’s furniture and décor. “Even after 50 years, [these pieces] still feel contemporary and modern.”

Materials and textures are paramount throughout the space, from the casual Aquavit café at the front, through the bar area, into the formal dining room, and even through the lounge reserved for private events. From the Verner Panton lamps to the Arne Jacobsen chairs, the restaurant is a true testament to the lasting relevance of modernist style.

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