The landscape of Tampa, Florida is changing dramatically. The city recently built a new subdivision just steps from the arena where the Tampa Bay Lightning play. In particular, there is a first five-star hotel, as well as the very first French brasserie in the city. And its design is signed by none other than Montrealer Zébulon Perron.
A priori, nothing destined Zébulon Perron to sign projects in Tampa, Florida. But chance would have it otherwise. And this one sometimes gets it right, because the West Florida city is in full swing, to the point where Time Magazine included it in its 50 destinations of 2023, alongside places like Barcelona. , Budapest or Mexico1.
Which makes it a particularly interesting place to work, says Zébulon Perron, known here for designing countless restaurants and bars. However, the Florida city had not particularly impressed him during his first visit, fifteen years ago. “Tampa didn’t really impress me back then; she had even left me rather indifferent, ”he says, reached on the phone.
But the situation is quite different today, he is the first to agree. The region is experiencing strong growth, both demographic and economic, and this effervescence is leading to a movement of freshness. “We feel that there is an appetite for novelty,” says Zébulon Perron. In this context, having a real brewery like in any good international city is a bit symbolic of the changing status of the city and its new stature. »
Boulon’s Brewery is located on Main Street in Water Street Tampa, a multi-billion dollar neighborhood that is home to homes, offices and businesses. “It’s in the heart of a new waterfront neighborhood. It’s quite impressive and it already looks inhabited, because they planted mature trees. »
The brewery sits in an enviable spot on Old Water Street, with a long frontage that faces the street. The store is topped by a large Art Deco-style sign, inspired by the Odeon in New York, says the designer, who has also been to the Big Apple recently: he has just signed the design of a new restaurant in Chelsea.
When investors approached him for this project, they had no idea how much they were hitting the bull’s eye by bringing in Zébulon Perron. However, they had simply been seduced by his project for Marcus, the restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel Montreal, when they were passing through the metropolis. “They told me they wanted to do a French brasserie. I replied, “I’m right in my element, I know exactly what to do!” »
So there is a good touch from here in this new Florida establishment, concedes Zébulon Perron. “We are really in the spirit of Luc Laporte, the architect of several Montreal breweries, including L’Express, Leméac and Lux, at the time. »
“It’s also a very symmetrical layout, since we have a large facade on the street,” continues Zébulon Perron. Moreover, all the decorative lights were designed in collaboration with the Montreal company Lambert
To top it off, Quebecer Vincent Lecavalier, who was captain of the Lightning, is one of the investors in the project.
The change of scenery seems total for customers.
By the way, Time Magazine mentions in its article the Water Street district, as well as the brasserie and its delicious snail dish… highlighting the work of Montreal designers by the strip, but without writing their name!
It’s still buzzing in Tampa, as a new restaurant from the same investors, Next Level Brands, opened a few days ago, Union New American. They again entrusted the design to the Zébulon Perron workshop. And according to him, it’s not over: “I think this is the beginning, not the end, of our presence there,” he predicts.