In a bid to attract a new, “young and adventurous” clientele, Sydney’s renowned Japanese restaurant, Musashi Izakaya, has undergone an extensive renovation.
October 1st, 2013
With a brief to deliver a dynamic new space and rebrand on a minimal budget, Vie Studio from Sydney were engaged, placing a strong focus on Japanese arts & culture.
“The concept of Musashi bifurcated from the legendary Miyamoto Musashi, a swordsman and samurai who was the pioneer of the Dual Sword Technique.” Explains design director Sheila Liew. “Exploring the idea of duality and designs of his costume, the story of this remarkable Japanese swordsman is brought to life on the restaurant walls.”
In the ‘rising sun’ light fittings and the finishes too, the story of Musashi plays out across the restaurant’s walls with printed plywood panels “depicting scenes of fortitude and bravery,” Liew points out.
Taking a tailored approach to the more detailed elements within the space, Liew and her team have imbued the eatery with a dramatic edge through the use of Japanese patterning in banquette seating and laser cut wall treatments – all the more poignant given its proximity to the historical Capitol Theatre.
Touching on the restaurant’s locale and the influence this has on Musashi’s interiors, Liew describes the overall effect as an “intense cultural expression, in contrast with the modern and contemporary approach, underlining its idiosyncrasy within the Sydney Chinatown neighbourhood.”
A liberal and deliberate use of yellow was employed to accentuate the new fit-out against its heritage façade. To passers-by the “freshness” pervades reinforcing the rebranding and renewal of a favourite restaurant.
Images © Andrew Worssam Photography
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