Tony's Galley - 600g Salt Water Aquarium


During the Height of Covid-19 lockdowns in 2020, we were contacted by Tony's Galley in Santa Rosa to build a massive 600g Aquarium to be the centerpiece of a new restaurant. With the world showing its ugly side, what better response than to create something beautiful. The tank was to large enough for all to see, meaning that the stand and the tank were both 48"s tall!


We started the discussion with a request for a living reef. However, as a designer that seeks to design functional systems that can be cared for properly for years and decades, I made the suggestion to dare I say a 'Synthetic' reef? Its almost been against my principles as an artist to use synthetics as I enjoy focus on all natural elements. However, after discussing the budget, maintenance requirements, and constraints of the building itself, a synthetic reef was a perfect solution. The tank needs to look spotless, lively, and within a budgetary constraint. Living reefs with Intense lights can be challenging to keep clean at all times, especially with a limited maintenance budget. A synthetic reef can be kept at lower light, and use chemicals for algae control that cannot be used in living reefs.



If we were going to do synthetics, we chose to do it right. We worked with Poseidon Construction to design the reef structure, coral choices, and color scheme.


With tanks this large, we have to think about water changes and maintenance. Instead of having a service crew drag in a 150 gallons of water just to do a water change, I wanted all the water supplied and made onside. I designed water changes to be as easy as turning a few valves and turning on a couple pumps. I was able to fit a large custom container under the stand that is filled with an RODi installed in the ceiling! All you have to do is fill it with salt, turn on the mixing pump and you have 150 gallons of salt water at your ready. To remove dirty water from the tank, a flip of a switch pumps water straight up the column through the ceiling and into a remote drain. Now turn on the transfer pump to move new salt water to refill the tank and your done. Not a drip on the floor, no buckets, hoses and probably easier than a water change on your 10g petco tank.

If I had a little more time, I could have been a little more OCD and precise with plumbing, but it looks good and functions well.


Water in and Lights on and its starting to look like a real fish tank!


Opening day and the place is a hit. It was a pleasure to make this vision manifest for this client. If you are in the Santa Rosa area, stop by have a lobster roll and check out the fish. Tony's Galley - 722 Village Ct Santa Rosa, CA 95405




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