A vibrant new venue known as Bronte has been introduced to London, overlooking the renowned Trafalgar Square. The restaurant is serving up fresh and contemporary dishes from breakfast through to dinner.
Located at the ever-popular Strand, this new dining destination is a welcome addition to London’s diverse restaurant scene.
Tom Dixon’s Design Research Studio have delivered a glamorous and convivial space in which customers can feel welcome and comfortable, presenting the perfect spot for a catch up over a bottle of wine with friends, a romantic dinner with a loved one, or celebrating on the mezzanine as a private party.
Micaela Silva, Designer at Design Research Studio, told Premier Hospitality:
“It is a brand new restaurant concept from the client. Adam and Trevor have another restaurant and bar in Covent Garden, named Circus – however this is a completely different offering.”
Developments commenced in late 2015 and are now complete. A soft launch took place in Mid-July during which the restaurant experienced a wealth of success and positive feedback from those who attended.
Customers are greeted by a classical building featuring an external colonnade and big arched windows, leading into the double-height front area of the restaurant. With roughly 220 covers throughout, the restaurant continues onto a more private dining room at the back and a charming mezzanine level, which is used as a dining space but also can be hired for private events and parties.
A pink concrete bar is used mostly for breakfast and different juices and smoothies through the day – but transformed into a cocktail bar at night, offering a variety of show-stopping classics and drinks with a twist.
Delivering a great sense of theatre, the open kitchen in beautiful green granite allows customers to observe the chefs at work right in front of their very eyes. The main kitchen is located on the floor below however there is a fair amount of cooking also done in the ground floor open kitchen.
Out of the way of the public, the first basement is where the toilets and staff rooms are located, and the second basement houses the main kitchen.
“We went for a monochromatic background with a dark wooden floor against white panelled walls, creating a clean and light setting.
“Against this simple backdrop, we have key statement pieces like the pink concrete bar and the soft upholstery in vibrant greens and pinks which is the main colour scheme throughout the space. Lush planting adds to the fresh and natural feel within the venue.
“Complementing the bright colour accents and white background, we’ve finished all the metalwork, including the balustrades and bar shelving, in passivated steel which is a technique that leaves a warm iridescent colour on metal.”
An important request from the client was a change to the façade – the building has three large arch windows and originally there was only one entrance within the central arch. Design Research Studio added doors to the other two arches to convey a seamless inside-outside space connecting to the terrace.
Created by Executive Chef Andrew Lassetter and appointed Head Chef Jonathan Villar, the global menu incorporates Antipodean and Pacific influences. Mains come served with nori salted skinny fries, avocado and orange salad with a mizuna and makuna honey dressing or Miso slaw, shiso, red onion and sweetheart cabbage.
Highlights on the menu include a rare breed beef burger with chilli miso relish, quinoa onion rings and baby gem in a brioche bun and Hanger steak, weeping tiger dressing, pickled daikon and kaffir leaf.
“It was a very quick timeline and a strict programme onsite so I think this was the most challenging aspect of the process. We had to work very closely with the contractors in order to deliver the project on time.
“It’s great to work with Adam and Trevor– Design Research Studio worked with them on Circus several years back, so it is always nice to work with familiar faces and have an existing relationship.”
Light.IQ was founded in 2001 by Creative Director Rebecca Weir with a mission to provide inspirational and innovative lighting solutions whilst integrating intelligent design with exceptional customer service.
The company’s aim is for excellence in everything that they do, whether it is the lighting of a private garden in the English countryside or the luxurious interiors of a five star hotel in Mexico. The shared passion is to deliver beautiful lighting design ensuring that their client’s expectations are exceeded.
Light.IQ have worked with numerous clients since their inception including Alan Yau’s Park Chinois, The Big Easy Chain, David Archer Studio, David Collins Studio, HL Studio, Concrete, Moncler, Alexander McQueen and Tom Dixon’s DRS to name a few.
Most recently, they worked alongside DRS on the development of the Bronte Restaurant – a new swanky dining establishment in Trafalgar Square, London, driven by Adam Davies of Circus.
Work on the project was undertaken by the team at Light.IQ which included Flick Ansell – Senior Designer, Seoyeonjin Choi -Junior Designer, Danguole Linkeviciute – Lighting Technician, Adam Lock – Sales Manager and Gerardo Olvera – Design Director.
Commenting on the Bronte project, Senior Lighting Designer at Light.IQ, Flick Ansell, said: “We have greatly enjoyed working with DRS on the challenging, fast track programme to turn the site into an accessible luxurious dining experience. Light IQ provided support for the selection of decorative lights, by introducing new layers of warm and sensitive architectural lighting to create a fresh, comfortable, sophisticated dining experience.
“This was a very prestigious project for us in many ways. Most importantly was the trust and loyalty offered by the Design Team, with whom I have worked before. It is always a real pleasure to consolidate and develop relationships. With a forward thinking restaurateur leading the vision, an exciting design team and busy location, the pace was demanding and fun. Tom Dixon’s stunning vision to create a fresh, airy and bright restaurant was clearly set from the outset; it was our job to support that with sophisticated lighting design, technical expertise and product procurement.”