Following their win at the 2013 Restaurant and Bar Design Awards, Mike Stiff, Director at Stiff + Trevillion gives us his comments on winning the award for The Corner, how the project came about, and some of their 2014 plans.
What has been the effect of you winning Best Restaurant or Bar in a Retail Space at the Restaurant and Bar Design Awards this year, and how has it influenced your design plans for future projects?
Winning awards of this quality is great PR, restaurant design is fast moving, so it is good to demonstrate that you are delivering the best.
Tell us about the winning project, The Corner, and how you were inspired to create it.
We worked closely with the Selfridges team. They have done a great job re-positioning the store, and they clearly see design as an important means of doing this. The project needed to be smart (it is on the women’s fashion floor) without being intimidating. Glamorous and tasteful. The store is gradually opening up the windows again, and we were able to exploit the wonderful daylight and the views.
Give us an example of a really great food and drink venue that is design-led, and works well for customers, and why this is?
Having just come back from New York, it has to be Red Rooster in Harlem. A brilliant nosy bar, like something out of a Tarantino film, and a great restaurant behind it serving classic American food.
Which hospitality operator would you love to work for and why?
I would have said Mark Hix, but we are lucky enough to be working with him now.
What trends do you foresee for the next few years in designing for this sector?
Dining out is now embedded in British culture, London has an amazing restaurant scent. There can’t be any more burger or steak joints, surely? I really like what is happening at Brixton market, small sustainable restaurants that are youthful and alive.
Can you tell us any of your plans for 2014?
We are starting to work with Jamie Oliver on the overseas expansion of Jamie’s Italian; we are designing another new restaurant for Mark Hix; and our work with EAT continues.
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