Canlis Wins the James Beard 2019 Design Icon Award


There is something to be said for the power of modern architecture. I have long admired the clean lines of Canlis, the windowed masterpiece perched on the east slope of Queen Anne. Now the restaurant is in the global spotlight, as it was recognized by James Beard with the 2019 Design Icon Award. As Seattle Met outlines, this is not the first time the local eatery has been recognized by James Beard; it achieved recognition for Outstanding Wine Program in 2017. The restaurant was designed by Roland Terry and since opening its doors in 1950, it has provided visitors with delectable meals and an unforgettable ambiance.

Seattle Met describes a dining experience at Canlis as follows: “Dining at Canlis is every bit about how you feel—how you twinkle like a tabletop votive at every turn of the meal, how the 1950s-era space feels as fresh and modern today as it did seven decades ago.” To be sure, the panoramic views framed by enormous raked glass walls are as awe-inspiring as the food itself.

The Met also notes that few restaurants meet the strict qualifications required of the Design Icon Award, which include an architectural style that has remained “substantially unchanged for at least 20 years” and that the architecture has served as an inspiration for other restaurants.