The intention of designing this restaurant is to create a quiet and relaxing dining atmosphere for the employees of the Elegant-prosper company after their busy work. I seek to satisfy the needs of the employees to dine alone, in pairs, in group of four or with even more people in this restaurant. In the mean time, colleagues could come and chat here, department parties could be held here, leaders of the company could receive and treat foreign guests here. Therefore, I have designed rooms of different sizes with tables of four, six, seven and twelve people. There are also single seats in the bar area where open, semi-open and relatively closed rooms are provided to meet different needs.
The concept of this design:
I just mentioned the intention is to create a quiet and relaxing atmosphere, for we are right now living in a society with all various kinds of people and things, adding the nerve-racking busy work, we really need a place to simplify and filtrate our already cloudy and messy visions and thus rest our mind. Because of that, I want to create a state of “Zen” in the space design. “Thoughts of Zen” is the essence of oriental Zen Buddhism, a spirit, a space for thoughts. “Silence, elegance and simpleness” are its true spirits. For instance, an often empty room in a Japanese design, or a room with only one pottery, one painting and one unadorned vase with one single flower. That is what “Zen” is looking for, As “without is within, many is one and one is many”, Zen seeks “more” in spiritual world from “less” in material world. For that reason, the decoration of the restaurant keeps as simple as possible to create an artistic and spiritual conception. Here, you can really unleash your mind and enjoy both real food and delicious food for thought. What materials you present the so called “Thoughts of Zen”?
Firstly, simple and plain wooden materials are used vastly in the whole place. As a material of nature, wood, like people, had a life and can breathe, which gives us a sense of closeness. So I chose light straight-line board varnished with matte water paint as the veneer. The wood keeps the color and patterns of the log and is environment-friendly. Apart from that, you will find stone paved floor with white cobbles embedded between seams, wooden columns on the wall, and wooden lights in the corners…Elements of a Zen garden are blended in an interior design.
On the wall of the Tatami Box in the Westside of the restaurant, you will find wave shaped textural effect, which is my means to express the “Thoughts of Zen”, using a natural protective material – diatom ooze to put the “White Sand Water” of the courtyard “Waters of Withered Mountain” into the room and on the wall, forming a unique textural effect with the help of lighting.
A hand-painted wall with a peony stands out. Lined out by light colors on the white wall, it lights up the whole room, making it lively. “Wood, slates, cobbles, white sand, waterside plats, peonies, knitting mats, bamboo wares and paper wares…” natural materials matched with simple lines have created a space that makes people feel beyond the world, which perfectly embodies the “thought of purity” of Zen.Location: Jiaxing, Zhejiang, China Architects: Kita Tong
Area: 550.0 sqm
Photographs: Kita Tong