Restaurants and bars used to be judged upon the quality of the food and drinks they offer. Nowadays ambiance and great environment count almost as much as food, beverage and service.

With previous experience in interior design for hospitality in Europe, I am really interested in the designs that artists create in bars and restaurants. Playing with shapes, textures, colors and lighting to create different atmospheres at different times of the day is something really challenging but exciting.

And when interior designers get it right, it is extremely rewarding! I’ve identified a series of bars and and restaurants worldwide that have an exceptional setting and I comment each of them, highlighting what makes them unique.


G9 Shanghai is a 298sqm restaurant designed by the award winning multidisciplinary design studio Atelier I-N-D-J.

Within this dramatic triple height space, that is part of main land China’s first luxury department store; Lane Crawford, Ian Douglas-Jones, founder of Atelier I-N-D-J envisioned a unique interior design. He states:

The unusually proportioned space just had to be exploited and celebrated. Early on I had persuaded the client that this presented an opportunity to create something that subverts preconceptions.

With its combination of luxury via the use of noble materials such as black marble, shimmering gold, as well as technology, industry and art with its bright light and high art, G9 can be seen as a celebration for the rise of the Chinese economic super power.

The key element, or should we say the masterpiece of this interior design is a super scaled interactive light installation that ends in a major site specific art work by British Artist INSA. The setting is pretty impressive: the interactive lighting installation cascades through the space terminating in INSA’s trademark ‘Grafitti Fetish’- an exploration of the iconography of modern aspirations.

The interactivity between user and this art work are quite clever as well: A 3D depth sensing camera invites the users to engage in the light installation and art piece by controlling the speed brightness and pattern of the light with simple hand gestures. In this way the light installation and art work in synchronisation controlled by a singular user.

For all the attributes mentionned above, the G9 offers a unique realm of exhibition, engagement, and experience. We at REGARD really appreciate this approach.






Credit Photography: Bono Yan

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