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Go Inside Ken Fulk’s Newest Kingdom

The San Francisco-based designer Ken Fulk sets his sights on Las Vegas

When superstar interior designer Ken Fulk started work on the sprawling Vegas outpost of Sadelle’s, he knew he had to make an enormous floor plan feel intimate. He wanted to take the essence of Sadelle’s in New York—think pastels colors and a whiff of Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel whimsy—and calibrate it to match the elegance and extravagance of Bellagio. He knew it was vital to have a place that felt alive and appropriate all day, from early-morning to late-night. The result was a colorful and comfortable space, next to Bellagio’s gorgeous sky-lit Conservatory, that feels like different cozy experiences in a gigantic space. We talked to Fulk about how he broke it all down to create a singular dining experience.

Ken Fulk

How did being in Las Vegas and having such a large footprint make you think differently?

Here, we embraced the architecture of the space by dividing it into distinct zones that feel intimate despite the size of the overall space. As you enter, there’s a take-away area with our custom salmon-pink coffee cart, which leads to café seating along the windows. Up on the second level, the lounge area features a bar and sexy serpentine emerald velvet sofas, while the surrounding dining areas offer large banquettes and curtains to help soften the space. Sadelle’s is open 18 hours a day, seven days a week.

Did the idea of this being a true all-day restaurant influence the design?

We looked to the classic grand cafes of Belle Époque Paris, which perfected the transition from day to night with versatile furnishings and great lighting. With multiple seating areas that range from bistro-style two-tops to large upholstered banquettes, the restaurant can accommodate anything from a quick breakfast on the go to a large seated private dinner and everything in between.

The private dining room at Sadelle’s

In Las Vegas, everything is over the top and celebratory. What are your favorite examples of how the design at Sadelle’s embraces this idea?

This is a celebration of materials and color—an amped-up version of the palette at the original SoHo location. We were inspired in part by the vibrancy of Vegas but also by the incredible light within the space. We wanted to use colors that wouldn’t wash out and would feel sophisticated from morning to night so we started with ocean blue, chive green and rosy salmon pink and layered in a range of luxurious textures like herringbone wood and inlaid stone floors, velvet upholstery, fringed drapery and polished oak with brass details.

What makes Bellagio such a good location for Sadelle’s?

The Bellagio was the first to redefine luxury in Las Vegas, with its commitment to impeccable design and personalized service. The Sadelle’s experience—from the seafood towers to the many custom details we created—is perfectly aligned with that ideal of meaningful luxury.