New York City’s LDV Hospitality, owner of the chic modern Italian restaurant concept Scarpetta Restaurants, has just opened Sette, its first London restaurant, in Knightsbridge Green.
The restaurant, whose name represents the lucky number seven, is LDV Hospitality’s newest restaurant from the Scarpetta family. Operating independently, but housed on the ground floor of Bvlgari Hotel London, Sette brings authentic Italian food from the heart of Manhattan with its own inimitable flair.
The refurbishment works included the full fit out of the restaurant and lounge spaces and involved stripping out the existing restaurant and bar, and infilling the venue’s curved staircase to create two distinct spaces.
Sette has been designed by the esteemed Thomas Juul-Hansen, who is also credited with designing the flagship Scarpetta NYC location in the trendy NoMad neighbourhood in Manhattan. The main contractor for the fit out of Sette was WFC Contractors.
Hansen maximises the juxtaposition of natural and industrial materials, paired harmoniously together in chic, modern simplicity. The understated-yet-elegant approach to design creates an environment that is simultaneously stylish, welcoming, and inspiring.
He said: “The essential pursuit in designing Sette was to create a space that would foster an inimitable dining experience. Every aspect of the architecture, each light fixture and every element of furniture or décor was created exclusively for this restaurant, all from the same hand, a total design balanced in harmony.
“From the outset, we wanted to maintain a consistency between the new Sette in London with its predecessor Scarpetta, in New York.
“The original’s DNA can be found in the layout, the approach to lighting, wall finishes, the balancing of both rough and refined elements, and visual prominence of the wine room. Most critical was to capture Scarpetta’s casual but sophisticated atmosphere.”
The designers tried to limit themselves to natural materials such as wood, metal, stone, wool, and leather throughout, and let the design and expression come from the individual materials.
Design highlights include the venue’s central marble bar and the wood flooring which brings a lot of warmth to the room and is complimented by brass accents. The design throughout has utilised fairly soft forms with the seating elements to provide a pleasing contrast with the architecture.
John Meadow, founder of LDV Hospitality said: “Our Scarpetta approach has always been comfortable yet aspirational, and modern yet grounded with a love for old world hospitality. Sette will follow this core ethos of our Scarpetta identity, capturing a quintessential New York balance of high energy and effortless elegance. We are delighted to bring our passion to guests in London.”
The term Scarpetta is derived from the Italian tradition of ‘fare la Scarpetta,’ which means to indulge in a meal down to the very last morsel. Sette will remain true to this philosophy by continuing in its tradition of sourcing excellent seasonal, local ingredients, and crafting freshly baked breads and its famous homemade pastas daily, including the renowned Scarpetta classic – Spaghetti with Tomato and Basil.
Many beloved signature dishes will be included on the Sette menu, with new additions specific to Sette. The Crudo section will boast delicate YellowTail and Tuna Susci, complementing the Verdure section, featuring a rotation of vibrant local seasonal vegetables.
Main courses will include Halibut and the Veal Tenderloin with gnocchi alla romana and glazed sweetbreads, which can be paired with a robust and eclectic mix of classic and esoteric Italian wines. The restaurant will serve lunch and dinner daily, as well as brunch on the weekends.
In true ‘Dolce Vita’ style, the evenings continue after dinner at Sette, downstairs in the ‘underground’ bar, Nolita Social. Named after New York’s most charming neighbourhood, North of Little Italy, Nolita Social brings the energy of ‘the New York night’ to London, with a heady mix of crafted cocktails, live music and DJ’s playing 60’s rock, 70’s soul, and 90’s hip-hop for a stylish, yet carefree crowd.
This lounge offers guests a journey of social discovery, beginning with aperitifs and light bites, featuring London’s best music acts and then transitioning to a feel good after hours hangout; encouraging a place that is a small, intimate, and seductive. Knightsbridge finally has a fun after hours hangout, perfect for light-hearted revelry.
As lead contractor for Sette, WFC was tasked with bringing the design of Thomas Juul-Hansen to life. The project encompassed a number of logistical challenges, as WFC Project Manager Aaron Lewis explained:
“It was a 14-week programme so there was quite a lot of work that was needed. It was quite a challenging project because there’s an existing bar on the ground floor, a restaurant in the basement and a huge spiral staircase linking the two. The brief was to remove that staircase and infill the floor, then install a bar on the first floor with an eating area behind it to create Sette. There was a lot of structural work and it was a challenging project in that respect for two reasons.
“Firstly, the steel work had to be delivered through the front door of the hotel at 2am. Secondly, we had to avoid making heavy construction noise that would disrupt hotel guests, so we had to soundproof the dividing walls.
“I think one of our USPs is to take on challenging projects and we have experience working around tricky logistics. We work closely with clients, which enables us to start on site earlier. Then when we’re on a job, the strength of our supply chain means we can turn things around very quickly. We like taking on challenging work because it reinforces our reputation. Sette is definitely one of our highlights for 2019.”
Established in 1976, WFC completes fit-out projects for operators of bars, restaurants, nightclubs, hotels, theatres and health and fitness and gaming venues. To find out more, please visit www.wfccontractors.com.