Working closely with Aqua Restaurant Group’s founder and creative director David Yeo, Jestico + Whiles have delivered a design that is unique to Aqua Shard and distinctive to this specific area of London. Photographer credit: Paul Winch-Furness
The design explores the cultural and geographic references to the area and is inspired by the themes of gin and tea: both symbols of British culture though one is the epitome of indulgence and revelry and the other a symbol of sophistication. These two elements have been referenced to give identity and character to the new 220-cover restaurant, which is divided into two main areas. The design of the 89-cover tea wing, which offers contemporary British cuisine, evokes memories of the tea trade of the East India Company, with dark green and brown leather, black marble herringbone and a dark oak floor. Fully-glazed, private dining rooms offer spectacular views across London in an exclusive setting. The gin wing – which can seat 66 – provides a more relaxed environment and recalls the smoky atmosphere of the gin distillery as well as the experience of gin blending. Black marble and dark oak also run through the surfaces of this wing, where opaque folding screens and metal framework offer the backdrop for a colour palette changing from a delicate green tint to a saturated purple. Peacock motifs applied to the window-facing and upholstered semi-circular banquettes evoke the best of British art nouveau textile designs.