Phuket Cafe & Langbaan

Thai pastel meets lush oasis in NW Portland.

Completed 2022

︎ Brand Strategy
︎ Identity Design
︎ Collateral & Signage
︎ Interiors


Katherine Garber ︎︎︎ interiors

1. Discovery
Until now, Langbaan has existed as an in-the-know-secret behind its sister restaurant, Paadee. Chef and owner, Earl Ninsom, partnered with Eric Nelson to expand on the concept and pair the tasting-menu restaurant with a more casual daytime spot. Out of this, Phuket Cafe was born. Half ode to the colorful streets of Old Phuket Town, half lush hidden oasis, the new location offers a Thai dining experience unlike any other in the city.

2. Framework
One part nostalgic, one part surreal — when you come across Phuket Cafe, you feel instantly transported to another place, as if you’re on a train headed straight to Phuket. It’s buzzing with the energy of a city center and the anticipation of arriving at your destination.

If Phuket Cafe is the journey, then Langbaan is the destination. We kept the elements of surprise that make Langbaan unique—the semi-hidden location, rotating menu, and arresting flavors—and translated that into a lush oasis behind Phuket’s bright exterior.

3. Design
Like the town itself, Phuket Cafe—made up of the exterior and bar side of the space—takes influence from vibrant elements of both Western and Eastern design. Outdoor diners may be seated at a “ticket counter” or in the streetside “train car.” The visual identity references the tactile experience of Thai travel, taking cues from paper tickets.

Langbaan’s identity remains the same as their previous iteration, with new interiors tucked inside the other half of the space. Wood screens, deeper greens, and a thicket of plants create a darker, cozier feel. Hand-hewn tiles and patinaed surfaces provide a textural, time-worn quality. Our custom wallpaper features the native Ti plant, incorporating some of Phuket’s pink to connect the two sides.


︎ Sunset Magazine

︎ Bon Appetit

︎ Two Food Parties in One Space: Phuket Cafe & the New Langbaan

︎ Langbaan a Semifinalist for the 2024 James Beard Awards 

︎︎︎ back to home

Interior design of train car outdoor seating at Phuket Cafe featuring pastel green seating and pink and red walls in Northwest Portland.