Wednesday 31 Aug 2011


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HASSELL produced three unique outlets in order to establish Yarra Lane as a destination precinct.

HASSELL was involved in the design of three outlets in Yarra Lane,: Outpost Dining Room, Mopho and Deba. Each outlet is designed to feel as though a unique entity, allowing the lane way to be characterised by the diversity of individual shops; a village high street.

Working with the chef, we understood the value of craftsmanship and authentic, fresh ingredients to the success of the Outpost Dining Room. In keeping with the importance of that authenticity, the research and design concept was extended to explore pre-industrial decorative arts and craftsmanship. A large number of found objects sourced locally in Melbourne were introduced within the design, including a recycled shop front, door handles, an ice sink and some art work.

Elements of a hawker’s bazaar are evident in the open kitchen of Mopho Noodle, which features an exposed dry stone and an array of shelves, hangers and pendant lights dappled around the bar. The stitched-together fabric ceiling, hung loosely to evoke a canopy, depicts abstract images of cheeky Shanghai models from the 1950’s. Shielded by heavy white Cyprus battens, the Deba sushi bar is quiet and contemplative.

The use of gloss white tiling edged in timber emulated the cleanness of a Japanese bath house, while the Koi fish mosaic and noren curtains evoke the serenity of a Japanese tea garden. Like exquisitely executed sashimi, Deba is intricate, intimate and crafted beautifully.

In all three instances the shop front not only hints at the interior experience but also opens out, allowing food collaboration to spill into the lane way. The success of this project is measured not only in the activity of these restaurants and bars, but also the increase activation of people now using this Lane as a place of destination.


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