Bluebird – Iconic restaurant unveils stunning new interior
Creating a spectacular new look interior for the restaurant and bar at London landmark Bluebird in King’s Road, Chelsea, a €2 million refurbishment project has just been completed.
The elegant interior which pays homage to Bluebird’s location in the former garage built for the Bluebird Motor Company in 1923, was designed by Sagrada (designers of Sartoria and the Arts Club).
The original architectural steelwork frame within the atrium has been coated in a red oxide paint and wrapped in climbing plants, whilst wild flowers, grasses and herbs are recessed into the back of banquettes to create the sense of an indoor English garden.
The new marble-topped bar, complemented by new bright red bar stools, continues to be located centrally, allowing the bar and bar team to remain an integral part of the venue.
Further design elements include custom made furniture in a diverse mix of fabrics and textures, including velvet seats and leather backed chairs, designed by British textile designer Celia Birtwell, a well as heavy drapes surrounding the dining room, which can be re-arranged to create a more private atmosphere.
The refurbishment increases the number of covers in the bar and restaurant from 230 to 248, with painted timber screens with layered motifs creating areas of intimacy.
Bluebird also continues to offer four private dining rooms as well as a dedicated events space.
Newly appointed Executive Chef Liam Smith-Laing’s new menus feature simple, fresh and honest dishes inspired by the best of modern European cooking, made using the finest ingredients and including both small plates and larger sharing dishes, reflecting Bluebird’s sociable and buzzy vibe.
Dishes on the menu include: rigatoni pasta with fresh porcini; Cornish cod with harissa crushed potato and crab; steamed bass, tomato and grape relish; daube of beef with young carrots and celery; grilled calf’s liver with sweet peppers, olives and sage; roast baby chicken with tarragon and lemon; Welsh lamb rump with merguez and bulgur and a selection of naturally aged, grass fed beef including rump sirloin, fillet and Galician ribeye.
Liam built his reputation at a number of leading restaurants including Gordon Ramsay at Claridges, Marcus Wareing at the Savoy grill and Petrus, taking his first head chef position at D&D London’s Skylon on the Southbank. He then made the move to La Petite Maison in lstanbul, returning to launch D&D London’s new venture in Soho, 100 Wardour St, before his appointment at Bluebird.
The wine list has been well considered with an emphasis on sparkling, English and natural wines, with a large selection available by the glass, and bottles from the Old and New World divided by style rather than region. The bar serves experimental and limited edition cocktails, with the heritage of the building, informing the selection.
Chief executive and Chairman of D&D London, Des Gunewardena said:
“Bluebird has been and continues to be one of our most successful venues.
“However, ahead of its 20th anniversary, we thought it would be a good time to give Bluebird a new look and an exciting new food direction. This was a major investment for us and one which I hope will reinforce Bluebird’s position as one of London’s most iconic restaurants.”
Bluebird opened 10 years ago with a design by Conran & Partners.
D&D London operates a group of luxury restaurants, bars and hotels based principally in London, but also with venues in Paris, New York and Tokyo.
D & D was founded by Des Gunewardena and David Loewi (the eponymous D and D) in 2006, following a buyout of Conran Restaurants, which itself was established back in 1991.
The company was already central to London’s restaurant scene, owning some of the capital’s most celebrated restaurants, such as Quaglino’s, Le Pont de la Tour, Chelsea’s famous Bluebird and City favourite Coq d’Argent.
The group also created and owned The Great Eastern Hotel (sold to Hyatt Hotels in 2006 and now rebranded as Andaz); Alcazar in Paris and Guastavino’s in New York, among others.