Sitting on the north side of Pershing Square in the heart of downtown Los Angeles, Perch is a bar and rooftop French bistro that occupies the top three floors of 448 S. Hill Street. With wrap-around patios on its 15th and 16th floors, it offers views of Bunker Hill to the north, Pershing Square to the south and to the east, the backside of the signs for both the Rosslyn and the New Million Dollar hotels.
It came into existence because local real estate developer and property owner, Jeffrey Fish, had completed a massive five-year retrofitting of this historic 13-story building and decided to increase its height by an additional three stories. He wanted the occupant of these additional stories to be a restaurant and selected Den Haan and Rachel Thomas, of “The Must” and “Coly’s Stromboli, to create, as Fish put it, “I didn’t want it to be a club, and I didn’t want it to be some pretentious place that’s hip for a second. I wanted it to be a downtown institution.”
How do you build a garden in the sky?
I joined the project during the final stages of the restaurant’s construction. The landscape architect, Mark David Levine, had already created the design and it was up to me to take those designs and make them real. It was at this intersection of design and reality that things became a bit complicated.
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