Magical Kolkata, India

The Kolkata-based Orient twin restaurants, with their oriental cuisines and contemporary Japanese style interiors, incorporate in their design ancient Japanese techniques ‘Feng Shui’ and ‘Taoism’ to reflect their cuisine in space. They were designed by Salient – a multidisciplinary architectural studio, The Orient, in Kolkata, India.

The design is derived to provide a private dining space for maximum seating. Using fabric partitions incorporated a sense of privacy into the design, while creating fluidity. The red colour of the fabrics enhances the oriental décor style.

The interiors were set up in frames. Each frame sings lore of Feng Shui; be it the fibreglass masks in between two red wooden Japanese doors at the street entry or the Chinese rickshaw at the mall entry. A sense of suspense is crafted in the design as the entrance does not reveal the entire dining space- but only a glimpse of the corridor that is dotted with elements of feng shui.

Adding soul to the street theme of the restaurant, the height of the half-walls separate the dining booths, by following a rhythm that dramatizes the view from the entrance. Metal jaalis with traditional patterns screen the booths from the ‘street’ of the restaurant whilst, diffused lights add an essence to the décor accents. Taoist prayer motifs on the walls further create a deliberate impression of the theme.

The material palette is a celebration of the Feng Shui principles that are used for prayer and meditation halls. Mirrored panels that relate to the reflectivity of water, and dominating red shears address the excitement and energy of fire, whereas noble grey flooring, brass bells and dark wood furniture render the earthiness of the place.

The bar and dining area have cosy warm lighting that gleams from behind a false ceiling composed of traditional brass cylinders. The Patio is an elaborate play of the sky view and bold, Anglo-Japanese décor and a blend of warm accent lighting. Taoist prayers and feng shui principles together bring the “chi”, material energy, to the design.