Skaliwags has multiple unique restaurants throughout Northeast Wisconsin, ranging from fine dining establishments to high-end burger eateries. Its owner, “Chef Chris,” decided to open a fifth distinct location, Skaliwags High Cotton Club, in downtown Green Bay
The new restaurant’s front bar keeps with the traditional Skaliwags model of a more casual bar atmosphere with a coastal vibe. The High Cotton Club, located in the rear of the building, takes the Skaliwags model to a new level of fine dining with an entirely different atmosphere of elegance. Counter seating directly faces the kitchen, enabling customers to interact with the chefs and to receive a unique and individual dining experience.
H.J. Martin and Son served as the construction manager for the project, starting with the design elements of renovating a former pub space into an upscale restaurant. The company also self-performed several scopes of work and oversaw other sub-contractors, who had to commit to a tight timeframe to complete the work. Architects, engineers and city officials also were interacted with on a regular basis.
This complex project involved an existing building that previously was added onto, remodeled at different times throughout its existence and presented new challenges each day. H.J. Martin and Son managed to take the customer’s desired vision and incorporate it into a space that originally wasn’t intended for use the way it was set up. The end result was an older building with new life, incorporating today’s expectations of style and functionality.
Multiple challenges were overcome over the course of the project. An entirely new electric service was installed, which involved the coordination of power shutdowns with the other tradesmen and an upstairs apartment resident. The front bar also had to be made capable of holding a granite countertop after removing the existing, only to discover that there wasn’t enough structure to hold additional weight. ADA access also had to be provided throughout, including restrooms, within a building that wasn’t up to code. City officials and health inspectors had to approve a new kitchen layout.
A number of unique characteristics are highlights of this project. A stenciled glass wall was installed to separate the dining area from the bar area. The use of caulk board paint, in Skaliwags’ signature colors, during the finish painting. Creation of an open-concept kitchen for a more personal setting that allows customers to interact with the chef. The use of reclaimed booth seating from Brett Favre’s Steakhouse in the Skaliwags High Cotton Club dining area. Installation of USB plugs at both the front bar seating space and the dining area half-wall.
H.J. Martin and Son had 2-15 company personnel working on site during the four-month period from March through June of 2019. The contingent included two carpenters doing demo work for two weeks, two framers/drywallers for three weeks, a drywall finisher for two weeks, two tile setters for two weeks, two flooring installers for two days, two glaziers for a week, a ceiling grid/tile installer for two weeks and a fixtures carpenter for two weeks.
Also on site were a variety of third-party workers, who had to be coordinated in a small area and tight timeframe: HVAC, electricians, painters, fire-suppression specialists, kitchen equipment suppliers, plumbers, roofers, graphics installers, beverage vendors, building inspectors and health inspectors.
The Walls & Ceilings division incorporated 3-5/8 inch steel studs into the buildout for a new wall to support a new rooftop unit.
Mohawk luxury vinyl plank was installed in the restaurant’s fine dining area. A 3/8-inch tempered glass was put in to separate fine dining from the bar.
Anatolia tile was used on the front bar’s face and on restroom floors. Instead of Fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) wall panels, stainless steel paneling was installed in the kitchen area, along with Daltile Quarry tile.
Medium-density fiberboard (MDF) and maple trim were installed on the back-bar surround and the fine-dining half-wall, and were chosen for their resistance to abuse, along with their ability to be painted.
CertainTeed Theatre black acoustical ceiling tiles and grid were put into place in the fine dining area to provide a high-level acoustical and aesthetic solution.
Child Crest wall tile was utilized within restrooms and was complemented by ASI black solid plastic toilet partitions in the front restrooms. Standard hollow metal doors and frames were used in the rear restrooms.