Blue Ocean Robata + Sushi Bar, Carlsbad, California, has been designed by Bells & Whistles as a fresh, re-definition of Japanese cuisine. The vision of the owner of the restaurant was that it should be completely new and non-traditional.
“The opportunity to complement the expectation-defying cuisine offered at Blue Ocean with a similarly unanticipated space was an exciting challenge,” said Bells & Whistles principal designer Barbara Rourke, who, along with co-principal Jason St. John, responded with a conceptual approach both modern and uniquely oceanic.
The exterior space and landscaping, that mimics coral beds, a rocky shoreline and surface-grazing minnows swimming alongside the origami-inspired signage, begins the guests’ oceanic experience.
This is followed by a sculptural, geometric fish entryway beckoning the guest indoors and transports to a wondrous undersea world with wood flooring the colour of the sandy ocean bottom, urchin-like lamps, and delicate bubbles of air floating to meet the refracted light of the ocean’s surface as symbolized by the origami ceiling.
“The modern, geometric design is inspired in no small part by its location; the tidal plains of Carlsbad State Beach and the rich marine ecosystem that inhabits the coastal kelp beds,” says St. John. “The sunlight, energy and colours of Southern California provided a rich tapestry of tones and shapes that drove the design process.”
Images © Jennifer Puno