This is a plan for the interior of a restaurant situated on the lower levels of a 34-story high rise building in the new center of Guangzhou, Guangdong province in China. The restaurant has 3,200m2 floor and a capacity of 250 for the restaurant and 100 for the cafe. It is an enormous project. In addition, this is to be the first “organic” restaurant + cafe in China.
For such a large space, standardizing with one design theme can be monotonous. Conceiving of the space as one “city”, a modern Chinese city, the idea is to reconstruct various historical Chinese public spaces such as plazas and Hu-tong (alleys) with novel interpretations by bringing materials used for traditional Chinese architecture such as stone, wood and roof tiles into a new space.
And as a unifying element, I’ve decided to use “water” which also plays a strong role in the landscape of southern China. Water, in its multi-various forms such as “streaming water” or “still water reflecting the scenery” etc., creates the keynote for the new “waterscape” throughout the space.
The client’s Buddhist faith is also distinctly represented in the design. With a golden Buddha script looming out from behind a dark glass wall, a lotus-shaped lighting fixture to make it look as if the ceiling is a water surface, and wall paintings in the private dining areas, there are different elements from which the presence of religion may be felt.
The project suggests a way of creating a contemporary space that is in keeping with the mood of Chinese tradition.