DATE: 2009
LOCATION: Phoenix, Arizona, USA
OLD USE: Department store
NEW USE: Restaurant


Built in downtown Phoenix in 1947, the Hanny’s three-story department store was heralded as “an architectural divergence” for Downtown Phoenix and also for bringing a “new look,” architecturally speaking, to the city. The store included a basement level as well as mezzanine. “Hanny’s is recognized as the best International Style commercial building in Phoenix, and possibly in Arizona. The building itself recognized the city’s entry into the modern post World War II commercial era and significantly influenced commercial building design in the 1950s.” Designed by local architects Royal Lescher and Leslie Mahoney, the building served as home to the department store until it closed in 1986. It was vacant for a short time until the City of Phoenix purchased the building as a fire-testing facility.[1]


Owner Karl Kopp owns a number of restaurants across the United States including AZ88 in Scottsdale, Elsa’s on the Park in Milwaukee, and Bar 89 in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood.

Scottsdale-based Janis Leonard was commissioned to handle the interior remodel of the space. Leonard also does seasonal installations at Kopp’s AZ88.[2]


Kopp developed the adaptive reuse plan for the old Hanny’s building out of a land-swap deal with Phoenix. He owned another building that he was planning to use for a restaurant but Phoenix wanted that site as part of Arizona State University’s downtown campus. Kopp received preservation funds with the swap in order to replace the Hanny’s roof.[3]

The ground floor of the building already included an open floor plan and two-story ceiling height that made adapting it for a restaurant easy. The interior had to be repaired due to the numerous fire damage with custom-made bricks. The changing rooms on the mezzanine were gutted to make way for extra seating and restrooms.[4] Hanny’s is making its mark on Phoenix once again.

[2]metromix Phoenix
[3]metromix Phoenix
[4]Architectural Record

Images courtesy of Hanny’s and Architectural Record.