PHOTO: Vespertine. Designed by EOM. Detail of an image by:Casey Dunn

Entering its fifteenth year, the AIA|LA Restaurant Design Awards honor and celebrate the delicious design of restaurants, bars, cafes, nightclubs, and lounges.

Scroll Down to View: Key Dates, Eligibility Requirements, Conditions of Entry, and Registration Link.

The program is an opportunity for both owners and designers to showcase the design of their premises that is as tantalizing and tasty as the culinary hotspots the architecture envelops.

An esteemed interdisciplinary jury reviews and selects the award finalists. Past jurors have been the late, great LA food critic Jonathan Gold, chefs & restaurateurs Nancy Silverton and Barbara Lazaroff, marketing gurus, foodies, chefs, and AIA members who have since become FAIA; including Barbara Bestor, Steven Ehrlich, Joey Shimoda, Ann Gray, Mark Rios & Frank Clementi, and many more!

Finalists are revealed for People’s Choice Voting, which has attracted national and global interest, and invited to present their work in person. This year the awards ceremony will be part of the LA Design Festival, held at ROW DTLA. There, the judges provide insightful notes for a crowd of interested attendees and then reveal the winning projects that are commemorated with a custom-engraved NotNeutral award.

Talk about tasty!

Scroll through this page for all eligibility and conditions of entry information.

To explore sponsorship opportunities for this program, please click here.

KEY DATES / 2019

Call for Entries Opens / Fri. March 1

Registrations Due / Mon. April 1 *Extended to April 8*

Submissions Due / Mon. April 29

Jury Day / Fri. May 17

People’s Choice Voting Opens / Fri. May 24

People’s Choice Voting Closes / Fri. June 14 at 12PM

Awards Ceremony / Sat. June 22

2019 RDA Winners Announced
View the fourteen dazzling recipients of the 2019 Restaurant Design Awards, as bestowed by the jury, and the three recipients of People's Choice Awards.
What the Jury Said
The press release announcing the 2019 AIA|LA RDA winners includes jury notes from: Ezequiel Farca, Intl. Assoc. AIA – CEO/Founder, Ezequiel Farca; Hans Rockenwagner – Owner, Rockenwagner Bakeries/Cafes; and Garrett Snyder – Food Editor, Los Angeles Magazine.

2019 RDA People's Choice Voting Opens
Yes, the finalists for the 2019 Restaurant Design Awards have been plated. Find out what eateries and bars they are, then vote in the People's Choice Awards.
Jury Feedback + Spectacular Finalists = Great Panel
Join the 2019 Restaurant Design Awards Jury, plus the spectacular AIA|LA RDA finalists for an annual crowd favorite: the live RDA finalists’ panel during which jury members and designers exchanges fascinating repartee.

2018 Finalist: Coffee for Sasquatch by Dan Brunn Architecture. Photo by Brandon Shigeta.
+The AIA|LA Restaurant Design Awards are open to owners, architects, designers; AIA Members and Non-Members alike.

+Project Categories are: Restaurants, Cafes/Bars, and Lounges/Nightclubs.

+Projects must be located in the United States, or be the work of US-based individuals and practices, completed outside of the USA.

+You may register & submit any number of built projects, in any of the three categories.

+Projects must have been completed in the last four years - finished no earlier than January 1, 2015.

+Projects must be, or have been, open to the public. If the site is no longer in operation, the project may still be submitted.

+Projects by any 2019 AIA|LA RDA jury member (or that jury member's firm, regardless of location) are not eligible.

+An entry will be eligible even though the submitting architect is not the sole author, providing the submitting architect credits all other participants who substantially contributed to the design of the project.
2018 Finalist: Dekkadance & Sora by AC Martin. Photo by Eric Laignel
+A non-refundable entry fee must be paid online at time of registration. No entry fee will be refunded for entries that are disqualified, late, or not completed.

+In order to submit, registration must be completed no later than Monday, April 1, 2019. *Extended to April 8*

+Projects submitted to other awards programs are eligible.

+Detailed submittal requirements, including specifications for entry materials and template, will be sent to all entrants after registration closes.

+All submissions will include:
++A "blind" project presentation for jury review.
++A concealed ID form with project credits.
++High-resolution project images, a selection of which may be used during People's Choice Voting, the AIA|LA Restaurant Design Awards Ceremony, and/or for publication and publicity.


Restaurants: projects designed for full food and drink table service.

Cafés/Bars: projects designed for counter, or informal, food and drink service.

Lounges/Nightclubs: projects designed for entertainment, typically serving drinks and offering seating, music, dancing, etc.


A distinguished jury will convene to review this year’s entries and designate projects for recognition. Evaluations will be based on function, ambience and visual impact. The number of projects awarded will be at the discretion of the jury.

The jury’s top selections will be revealed as finalists for open People’s Choice Voting. The highest recipient of votes in each category will be announced and awarded at the Restaurant Design Awards Ceremony.

Garrett Snyder
Food Editor, Los Angeles Magazine
Ezequiel Farca
Hans Rockenwagner
Owner Rockenwagner Bakeries/Cafes

PHOTO: Banner: Vespertine. Designed by EOM. Detail of an image by:Casey Dunn