A-nrd Studio used timber, glass and stone to tap into Thai cultural tradition and create this warehouse-style restaurant in London’s Borough Market.
The studio took the historic district of Bangkok as a starting point, drawing on the city’s traditional architecture as well as more vernacular forms of design, such as fishing boats and stilt houses. Their design unfolds over three levels of the former coach house Kolae occupies, which includes a courtyard and a top-floor dining room.
There’s a rawness to the restaurant thanks to A-nrd’s use of materials, creating a finished-unfinished feeling to the space. Yes, there’s exposed concrete and bricks, as well as limewashed plaster and handmade ceramics, but there’s also carefully planned and finished furniture in the form of upholstered bar stools and inlaid tables.
The brickwork is broken up by a panel of handmade tiles, created by A-nrd in partnership with Thai ceramicists Lamunlamai studio and made using food waste mixed with clay. The colours and textures are intended to echo the movements of the sea and the patterns created by water reflecting off boats.
‘Whether you are perched at the bar watching the chefs work or dine in the loft on the top floor, Kolae feels convivial, buzzy, welcoming, and authentically designed, and we hope that diners feel truly transported when they step inside,’ says A-nrd founder Alessio Nardi.