Friday 22 Mar 2013


Award banner

Located on the prestigious natural island of Saadiyat in the United Arab Emirates, along a five-mile stretch of environmentally-protected white sandy beachfront, the “Beach House” features homemade Mediterranean cuisine at its finest. Sitting at the end of the hotel property on the beachfront, guests arrive to a destination dining venue that epitomizes the idea of “barefoot bling.”

The overall design is a modern, contemporary interpretation of driftwood left behind after an ocean storm. The dining area is a seamless indoor/outdoor space delicately balanced to take advantage of the landscape and azure ocean views.  The French windows facilitate this transition, ensuring the entire space is open and airy.

The restaurant is broken into two distinct dining settings. One side is more social, with tall, communal-style tables and the other is more private, with intimate table settings and comfortable conversation enclaves. The private side of the Beach House has a light timber floor with a pebble-wash insert that further brings the external elements indoors. This area also contains small wooden stumps that act as pedestals and sit atop a light sisal rug.

Neutral, understated furniture pieces with clean lines and little pattern were used on both sides. They complement the light gray and white synthetic fiber wall panels. However, tall, chocolate leather chairs are positioned around the communal tables to ground the space and add contrast to the airy venue. The social side also houses an open kitchen with a large wood-burning oven. A distended display of colored bottles hangs over the exposed cooking table. These bottles allude to the iconic “message in a bottle” motif that adheres to the driftwood design concept. The dazzling jewel-toned inverted bottles reflect the colors of the ocean and sunset, infusing the space with energy and a hint of whimsy.

The restaurant also includes an outdoor deck and authentic rooftop tea corner. The deck is casual in nature, with all-weather rattan furniture and accent pillows that mirror the colors of the bottle lights inside. A rustic hammock is added to further create the “on the beachfront” relaxed vibe.

In the end, the design team and ownership worked well together throughout the design process.  The result: a soothing escape that offers guests a view of the Arabian Gulf on one side and the beautifully landscaped gardens of Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi on the other. 

Wilson Associates