Auckland eateries The Libertine, in the newly redeveloped Victoria Park Market, and Milse, within the Britomart Pavilions development, are both finalists in the Australasia and Pacific bar and restaurant categories for the international Restaurant & Bar Design Awards.
The Libertine’s designer Sam Ansley from Pack & Company says they wanted a “slightly anarchic” design, “with a strong focus on the industrial aesthetic of the Destructor building the site is within.”
But because of the location in a heritage building, “a lot of what would normally be possible, wasn’t.”
Ansley says his favourite part of the project was the, “sound insulation and timber sarking of the ceiling. An awesome mix of function in such a cavernous space, and the aesthetic beauty of the timber slats curving up the massive ceiling in sequence.”
Dessert restaurant Milse, with its ancient Arabian treatment, was designed by Cheshire Architects using their most sophisticated digital modeling software.
“The crystalline structure of sugars is conflated with the patterned delicacy of carved wooden moucharaby panels,” says director Nat Cheshire.
The firm had to deliver a production kitchen, retail store and dining space within a tiny site:
“We needed an architecture that might deftly absorb the ducks, dives and turns of the site. This meant rejecting the idea of decorating flat walls, windows and ceiling, and embracing instead the idea of a single, fluid surface that could subvert that complexity and shape a singularly elegant space.”
There are 190 projects on the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards shortlist, including three others from New Zealand: Little Nuffield by Material Creative, BinBin Deluxe by Lovelace & Co, and The Matakana Village Pub by Peter Were Architecture & Interiors.
Winners will be announced September 12.