SushiSamba, London, UK
Thursday 10 Jan 2013
Situated atop London's tallest tower, SushiSamba is a three-story, 20,000 SF culinary garden in the sky that contains five bars, two terraces, one restaurant and a lounge. The design imperative was to create distinct dining aesthetics that reflect the fusion of the cuisine and culture through fluid spatial relationships and the innovative composition of materials.
Melding cultural diversity, the stylistic iconography of modern Brazilian architecture is embodied in the design of the floor, wall and ceiling patterns, while Japanese elements are reflected in the colour, calligraphy and materials. Curvilinear forms and hand hewn materials that reinforce the earthy origins of the various cuisines exist as common design elements. A three level graffiti wall recalls the dynamic British street art movement and is visible from the variegated colourful glass sculpted entry wall.
The crystalline venue celebrates light, translucency and reflectivity. An illuminated, translucent sculptural orange glass and metal staircase connects all three floors. The main dining room's grid of 237 lights, hung from a 24' high asymmetrical, arched latticed bamboo ceiling, refract a pattern of light onto the three-sided floor-to-ceiling glass and enhance panoramic views of the skyline. The uninterrupted indoor-outdoor procession is further expressed with a curvilinear lit concrete and wood sushi bar that extends out to the west terrace. The bar centres on a 26' wide custom designed orange tree sculpture, heightening the earth to sky motif and provides an intimate backyard experience.
Housed as one entity, SushiSamba is a blend of different spaces and scales, distinguished by the use of dynamic volumes and materials that reinforces the brand's distinctive identity. The convergence of all design elements and the integration of a connection to nature, heritage of the cuisine and celebration of art, foster social interaction and allow the celebration to continue seamlessly within the progression of invigorating spaces.