If you know where the good addresses are, dining is so much more than just a sublime meal. In fact, a strong gastronomy concept goes beyond just the stomach. With the interior, you can make guests' experience memorable, appeal to all the senses, and create a micro-world. Thai restaurant Kolae in London has no problem with that, as the former coach house was renovated with the aim of emulating that specific architecture and style as closely as possible.
You will want to remember this name. A-nrd Studio was founded in 2015 by duo Alesslo Nardi and Lukas Persakovas. Eight years and several awards later, they come out with this top achievement that brings them to us. The spaces they design manage to be inventive and familiar at the same time. Authenticity, subtlety and a strong ability to associate helped them achieve this every time. For this project, they tackled a three-storey building in Borough Market, complete with a courtyard garden. That location may be a dream for culinary entrepreneurs, but the designers were primarily guided by Bangkok's aesthetic as well. Obvious industrial undertones are immediately apparent upon entering. Cement floors, lime plaster and bricks that have just the right rough edge are some of the key examples. Large plants were also scattered throughout the levels; this adds to the cosy nooks sprinkled throughout the floor plan and the intimate feeling with which guests take their meals. A conscious effort was made to preserve authentic aspects of the property, notably the original flooring on the first level. In addition, there are many references to Thai culture. Note not only the cocktail bar and the open kitchen itself, but also the influences of the so-called stilt houses on the bar, which characterise the traditional residential landscape.
A conscious effort was made to preserve authentic aspects of the property
In the past, the studio already received justified praise for their custom-made furniture. Here, they were happy to reaffirm this in several ways. For instance, the bar chairs with simple, geometric shapes are a product of the duo, as are the benches with light brown leather upholstery. For one of the minimalist-style bars, they developed shelves, on which Thai ceramics and plants complete the interior. For the whole range, they used oak, which was worked with a traditional technique and for which they collaborated closely with some of the best joiners in northern England. A consistent colour palette of dark, muted tones was applied across the property. On the one hand, this blends seamlessly with the handmade character of many elements; on the other, it is perfect for confirming a convivial atmosphere. On the second floor, guests can also enjoy private dining. This is where the loft feel comes in extra strong and where there are several options for table arrangements. Restaurant Kolae's interior alone is enough to win you over. Synchronously with the food, you step into spaces that are grounded in Thai customs and styles, without sacrificing a universal appeal that transcends cultures. Driven by warmth and earthy minimalism, the property will no doubt grow into a concept not to be missed. Photography by Eleonora Boscarelli
Text by Cara Jacobs