Renovation Project Spotlight: Ruby Event Venue

Fry Classic Construction transforms former church into award-winning Midtown Nashville event space.

Here at Fry Classic Construction, we want to use our new blog as a means of communication with our current and prospective clients and also to highlight memorable past builds.  Ruby, the former church turned award-winning boutique event venue, is one of our previous rehabilitation projects that we are especially proud of.

When we were initially approached by owners Dan and Brenda Cook – they told us they had just purchased an old abandoned church in the heart of Hillsboro Village and hoped to transform it into a modern event venue would be the focal point of the growing Midtown neighborhood.  We hold a special place in our hearts for rehabilitation projects (our very first project was a renovation) and we were inspired and energized by their vision and couldn’t wait to collaborate.

As we began work on the renovation, one of our shared goals was to retain some of the building’s classic elements as a nod to its past as the former Primitive Baptist Church, and incorporate and repurpose those features into a new modern vision.  Through the course of the rehabilitation, we preserved the historic structure of the church- including the masonry walls, steel trusses, and hardwood floors and ceilings.

We combined these elements with natural materials to create a minimalist interior – the true plaster white walls lent a modern touch while contrasting with the industrial wood and steel truss ceilings overhead.  We also ensured the space would have ample natural lighting and a large amount of wide open space as the venue would be used for a variety of events.

The vision for outdoors was to integrate the park environment surrounding the building with the overall design to make the entire space feel like an escape from city life, an oasis in Hillsboro Village. We built out the building’s courtyards and added retaining walls and a railed deck that spans the length of the venue. The facility’s amazing view of Dragon Park’s famous dragon sculpture adds to its eclectic charm.

Upon completion, Ruby was immediately celebrated as a design marvel – a wonderful blend of modern and historic, minimalist and industrial.  Fry Classic Construction was thrilled to receive the Award for Urban Infill from Nashville’s Urban Institute Chapter for Ruby’s compelling design.  ULI award recipients are honored for innovation in land use and design, design and development excellence, contribution to the community/surrounding neighborhood, and environmental sensitivity, among other criteria.  We were honored to receive this prestigious award, and very pleased with the final results of this rehabilitation project.

Today, the repurposed historic structure has become one of Nashville’s most popular boutique event venues, currently available for wedding ceremonies and receptions, as well as corporate events, private parties and seated dinners. Visit Ruby’s website to learn more about hosting an event.

Sources: RUBY Nashville, Style Blueprint: Ruby Soul, Nashville ULI, Nashville Fun for Families: Fannie Dee’s Dragon Park