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Hospitality & Retail Design

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Rose Garden Tea Room | San Marino

Location: San Marino, California
Services: Interior Design, Environmental Graphics, Space Planning, Programming
Photography by JWPictures and D L English Design



D L English Design ‘Comes up roses’ with new Rose Garden Tea Room interiors project at The Huntington

D L English Design was selected to design and decorate the interiors of the iconic Rose Garden Tea Room at The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens. DLE provided interior design, custom furnishings design, and procured and installed furnishings for all the public areas of the newly renovated Rose Garden Tea Room. We were asked to design spaces that provide an experience unique from the other restaurants on property, befitting the honored tradition of ‘Tea at The Huntington. DLE’s work included all key public spaces, including the Tea Room, the Herb Room, The Shakespeare Room, connecting concourse/common areas, and restrooms. Guided by the context of the tea room’s historical architecture and beloved rose gardens, DLE weaved a story of color, materials, patterns, contextual furnishings, and space.


The Tea Room pulls its floral connection and uplifting sensibility from the 100-year-old rose garden to the south. DLE appropriately designed the room to show reverence for tradition while allowing for comfort and accessibility to hosting various events and diverse guests. Rich and textured fabrics are exhibited throughout the space, including the central 17- foot-long Morris & Company upholstered settee showcases a pattern from The Huntington’s historical collection. The Herb Room faces the curated herb garden on the west. The finishes used throughout this space have a more ordered look with the rigor of paneled walls and larger trims referencing storage and organization designed to be flexible, allowing for separate executive meetings or private events to run concurrently. The concourse space has high ceilings that allow natural light to enter and are intentionally designed to be transitional as guests move from one dining space to the next, physically connecting the Tea and Herb Rooms to the Shakespeare Room at the opposite end of the concourse. The new Shakespeare Room is an outdoor dining pavilion facing the Shakespeare Garden and Fountain and museum grounds beyond.


D L English curated overall finishes, fixtures, and furnishings throughout the building in collaboration with The Huntington and the Project Architect. Finishes were selected to functionally modernize the facility without sacrificing the legacy and tradition of The Huntington, preserving the experience of tea for a new generation of guests.