Tuesday 19 Apr 2011


Auckland-based architects Gascoigne Associates have designed the Cocoro Japanese restaurant, the 'little sister' of well-known Japanese hotspot Soto.

Cocoro means 'the heart and soul' in Japanese and is located halfway down Ponsonby's Brown Street in Auckland, New Zealand in an old industrial warehouse.

Gascoigne's associate Clark Pritchard worked with the owners on the interior of the restaurant to create an environment that is modern, comfortable and natural. The intimate décor includes a woven charcoal and chocolate carpet reminescent of subtle tatami-style matting, which detailing is also found in the Cocoro’s menus. The ceilings are sandblasted exposed concrete, lined with Macrocarpa batons integrating LED downlights and sound studio foam for acoustics. The rectangular slot window in the back wall allows diners to see into the kitchen and circular graphics from the logo have been printed on the up-lit black walls.

The large six metre long Macrocarpa dining table in the middle of the room has been cut from a single tree and invites guests to dine side by side. All of the selected materials are recyclable. The result is a contemporary space, suitable for both lunch and dinner, which compliments the tapas style menu with its simplicity.