When looking for examples of restaurants that demonstrate just how fantastic restaurant design can be capital cities have the greatest choice. No more so than in London. Here are three restaurants that exhibit all the qualities of fantastic design.
Situated in London’s Oxford Circus, Ethos, a vegetarian restaurant, demonstrates how nature and modern design can be unified to terrific effect. Many have tried mixing architecture with nature but in Ethos silver birch trees grow in the main restaurant areas.
Founded with the aim of providing meat-free foods in a world that is more healthy and kind the design perfectly encapsulates this aspiration through blending one of the most striking and obvious features in nature – the tree – with a light, modern interior.
The interior is filled with light which adds to the feeling of space provided by the white walls and ceiling, cut only by a narrow band of blue that circles the area a little below ceiling height. Tables are circular and not overly large, and are fashioned from light-coloured wood with white marble-like surfaces. The floor is also of a very light colour and the overall impression is of a clean, uplifting bright space that shows off the natural beauty of the silver birches to maximum effect.
Set in an 18th century townhouse in Mayfair’s Conduit Street Sketch is a complex of dining and drinking venues. There are no less than five of these and each has a very distinct style making them unique. One of the most striking is The Gallery.
The Gallery at Sketch is a pink cocoon somewhat reminiscent of 1930s and even 50s luxury. The seating is in pink, the tables small and covered with pristine white linen. The walls, also pink, are adorned to midway with black and white sketches by the artist David Shrigley, although these are destined for replacement in January 2018 with works in colour by the same artist.
Again the interior is well lit with an overall ambience that is uplifting and bright but at the same time exquisitely subtle. The Gallery’s interior is unique and now world-famous.
The restaurant forms part of the SacklerSeprentine Gallery and is the vision of architect ZahaHadid. The interior is bright, illuminated by both interior light and the natural light that falls through the glass walls. The roof is of undulating fabric, supported by columns around which the white tables and chairs are placed. The floor is also light in colour and the whole impression is that of an ultra-modern space in complete contact with the scenery outside. The exterior impression is of a flowing, organic shape, welcoming and nurturing. It is a prime example of how modern design can sit perfectly with classical architecture: the Serpentine Sackler Gallery itself was formerly a gunpowder store constructed in 1805. The Magazine could be a visitor from the future but also seems completely at home.