Candace Campos designs a lively, fun and feminine SoHo home for a modern Indian restaurant.
February 18th, 2016
Juhu Beach Club is a urban melting pot of flavours – and its façade and interiors are a fitting reflection of this. The restaurant comes to Hong Kong’s SoHo from the U.S.; it started life as a pop-up in San Francisco, with chef-owner Preeti Mistry taking a modern twist on traditional Indian fare. It then became a permanent fixture in Oakland before taking on Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong version soft-opened in November, featuring vibrant and eclectic design from Candace Campos, Founder and Creative Director of ID-entity Design. The designer took inspiration from Mistry’s dishes, which are inspired by the street fare of Mumbai, American comfort food and seasonal, organic Californian ingredients. “I saw a lot of Preeti’s food photography beforehand. It’s vibrant and colourful, lots of mini-burgers and sliders, and we wanted to play off that,” says Campos.
Colour is certainly at the heart of Juhu Beach Club’s aesthetic. Outside, there’s a mint-green façade, and inside, green terrazzo, yellow banquettes and vintage, floral wallpapers in this same palette meld with brass, oak and white tiling.
“They had pink in their branding, and a really soft palette of pinks, yellows. I added the mints. It stemmed from the original colour palette. They didn’t want the Hong Kong restaurant to be the same as the Oakland one, but they did want to convey some of the essence of the original,” explains Campos.
“It’s not your typical Indian colour palette, it’s a lot more subdued,” but she explains that this was where the initial inspiration came from. “The two female Oakland owners [who partnered with investors in Hong Kong] wanted it to feel soft and feminine, with a modern edge but not too modern. They gave me plenty of freedom, though.”
To bring the colour palette into her design further, Campos sought the help of Hong Kong artist Emily Elridge: “She added some of our colours onto the wallpapers,” says Campos, who searched far and wide for the 1960s and 70s floral wallpapers that line the walls of each of the bathrooms. “Each bathroom has a different floral print, and there’s one on the back wall,” she says.
While the search for wallpapers was time-consuming, the real challenge lay in the nature of the space. “It’s extremely thin,” says Campos. “There was nothing to do but create long, thin tables, as a tremendous amount of the space is bar and kitchen.”
So Campos custom-designed the tables, chairs and banquettes to fit the space, giving them rounded edges that echo the organic forms of the exterior. These are nicely juxtaposed by the pentagonal brass mirrors on the wall, and by the angular brass pendant lights from Brooklyn lighting studio DUNN.
These touches give the space its warmth and its multi-dimensionality, as do the cutting-board artworks by Indian artist Nisha Sembi. “We sent her all these old wood boards and asked her to paint on them and we put them up on the walls as an installation,” says Campos.
There’s room for growth, too: Campos designed the space so that the owners can add their own touches over time. “Not everything is fixed. We have a big overhead brass cabinet they can use to really collect things for their travels. And we’re growing a collection of vintage, floral plates that they’re using for presentation.”
It’s these little details that make Juhu Beach Club so vivid and vivacious – just like the Mumbai beach it’s named after.
Juhu Beach Club is located at 28 Elgin St, SoHo, Hong Kong.
Juhu Beach Club
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