A fishy tale

Dwp (design worldwide partnership) has created the interiors for the recently launched Belon Oyster Bar & Grill, located on the top floor of the Banyan Tree hotel in Macao, Hong Kong.

The venue boasts enormous windows with views over the Macao skyline and is evocative of an underwater experience set over 2,000m².

Dale Yeo, design director, dwp, Hong Kong, said the team was asked to develop a concept based on the venue being a specialty restaurant with an oyster bar, including spaces for private rooms, a wine cellar, grill bar with food display, gueridon (trolley) service, and a given seating number requirement.

Starting with the oyster shape, the design takes reference from a continuation of underwater forms, movements and colours.

Curvaceous oceanic shapes and details, are inspired by aquatic forms of scallop tails, jellyfish, tentacles, waves and spiralling shells.

“There was much discussion with the client, but dwp drove the concept for the brief,” he said.

“The most eye-catching features are the glass staircase, the double-story whalebone arch corridor, the scallop-inspired grill bar with adjacent double-height wine cellar, and the starlight ceiling lighting made, from a series of wave-shaped, and undulating-height, suspended crystals.

“The private rooms are more low key, though they still have a relaxed glamour. The rich timber wall panelling, tall windows and drapery make these spaces comfortable and intimate.”

From the entry, guests walk down a glass staircase, where they pass a waterfall and custom kinetic artwork, via a long reception, to arrive at the oyster bar.

The glass stairs glow deep blue underfoot with a blue translucent canopy on the ceiling like a curling ocean wave. The waterfall passes to the right from a double height ceiling to the pool below.

To the left, a glistening kinetic crystal suspended sculpture moves and sways in the imaginary current. A shallow water feature, as an extension of the waterfall, leads guests along the long, low and curving entry way, towards the bar and lounge.

“The floorplan sits on the long slender arm of the hotel wing. Working within this outline, the restaurant is laid out to create a procession, from an intimate entry landing, down and through a variance of low and high ceiling spaces along the spine, right to the end point of the private dining rooms,” said Yeo.

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