4 Trendsetting Design Restaurants
Their dishes may be delicious, but with interiors ranging from haute to psychedelic, the visuals at these new restaurants steal the show. By DIANA HUBBELL.
Published on Dec 24, 2015
The House on Sathorn
The W Bangkok's crowning jewel, an 1889 mansion that once was the Soviet Embassy, opened its restored louvred doors. The big reveal? A gorgeous courtyard overhung by big parasols, twisty trees and the sea of skyscrapers beyond; a sexy Art Deco lounge; the soon-to-come exclusive club and private accommodations—and an intimate dining room with a menu inspired by chef Fatih Tutak's travels. The communal bar around the open kitchen is the best place to gush over the beastly half-kilo river-prawn dish called Pier 9, or the playfully morbid Hunting, duck atop a splatter of pomegranate jus to symbolize blood. 106 Sathorn Rd.; +66 2 344 4000.
The House on Sathorn lights up Bangkok's brimming drinking and dining scene. Courtesy of W Hotel Bangkok.
The Renaissance epicenter informs both food and form here. A muted palette and touch of Carrara marble recall Italian classicism. Designer Emma Maxwell drew on her background in sculpture to add flair: blown-glass ornaments call to mind fireworks in a summer sky. La vita è bella, indeed. 1F, Bldg. 2, 6 Fangyuan Xilu, Chaoyang Dist.; +86 10 8431 0027.
Step into a contemporary take on the Italian Renaissance at Beijing's Florentina. Courtesy of Florentina.
Luxe brands like Bulgari, Prada and Porsche have been getting in the dining game and now Gucci has blazed onto the runway with a lush space swaddled in velvet, dark wood and gold. The aesthetic, like the menu, leans to expensive Italian, with napkins and silverware bearing the coveted logo and the brand's birth year. Eating here is a splurge to be sure, but less financially ruinous than anything in the actual Gucci store down the elevator. 413 IAPM Mall, 999 Huaihai Lu; +86 21 3356 3525.
Kawaii Monster Café
Where else but Harajuku could the neon acid trip that is Kawaii Monster Café feel at home? Local artist Sebastian Masuda taps the countercultural geist in an eatery that manages to be equally adorable and unsettling. After passing the luridly hued cake-shaped carousel, diners are led by heavily costumed "monster girl" hostesses to one of four areas, including Mushroom Disco, decorated with poisonous-looking fungi, and Mel-Tea Room, a Mad Hatter-worthy party. 4F, 4-31-10 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku; +81 3 5413 6142.