The Collection Restaurant
British designer Tom Dixon has completed the interior of the Collection Restaurant restaurant at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. This is the latest project for renowned restaurateur Oliver Peyton of Peyton and Byrne. The 150 cover restaurant opened to the public 18th January 2011.
The refurbishment of the RA restaurant for Peyton and Byrne references and respects the long and illustrious history of the academy and its existing architecture, whilst injecting a strong sense of world class contemporary operational elements and a new level of comfort. The zones in the restaurant are inspired by some of the Royal Academy Greats: Turner, Paolozzi and Sir John Soane.
High quality finishes include velvet, brass, marble and lava stone. Soft lighting, rich, warm colour tones and juxtaposing textures contribute to the restaurant’s rich and welcoming ambience. Key design features include a contemporary cubic glass unit housing an extraordinary selection from the RA permanent collection of sculptures, acting as a room divider, and also a sculptural, deconstructed brick counter inspired by Paolozzi. The colour scheme has been selected to improve the experience of the existing murals painted onto the restaurant walls by previous Academicians.
Design & Atmosphere:
The design taking inspiration from the creative worlds of art, fashion and music, the lofty interior is styled with inviting leather and velvet banquet seating, Dixon’s iconic metallic lighting, and textured walls of scorched wood and exposed brick, creating the perfect intimate setting for day and night. A specially commissioned artwork depicting a forest scene swathes the wall leading guests up the glass stairs to the mezzanine, which provides evening dining as well as space for private dining and events.
The entrance is just an intriguing door, beyond which lies a long, glass-floored walkway (which will be lit from below once early-days glitches are ironed out). This takes you to a vast, modern, moodily-lit, double-height bar for a few hundred drinkers, with a 150-cover dining platform above. There are huge, undressed, industrial, arched windows, a concrete floor, a long, steel-clad bar, black leather booths and black or turquoise velvet chairs. A typical Tom Dixon ceiling installation looks like a cluster of silver foil helium balloons, but probably cost rather more.
The upstairs restaurant contrasts surprisingly traditional, curvy (and comfy) chairs with black, high-gloss lacquered tables. A vast chandelier suggests a clutch of upturned cooking pans in copper – a trademark Dixon material. An industrial, metal ceiling zigzags up and down and back downstairs, there’s a DJ and dancing from 10pm on Friday and Saturday nights. A VIP room is under construction, and a small shop is more of a camp talking point than a serious retail opportunity, selling non-essentials like sets of Chanel spanners.
- Furniture and lighting designed by Dixon also features, including a new range of chairs and the perforated Etch lamps, which hang in clusters.
Tom Dixon Research Studio
Interior design practice, Design Research Studio, under the direction of British designer Tom Dixon, are creating the interior for the new restaurant at the Royal Academy of Arts. This is the latest project for renowned restaurateur Oliver Peyton of Peyton and Byrne. The 150 cover restaurant will open to the public 18th January 2011.
The 250 m2 refurbishment references the long and illustrious history of the Royal Academy of Arts with materials chosen to complement the existing fabric of the Regency building including marble, brass and velvet.
The dining area is divided into different zones, with each area inspired by the work of a different Royal Academy Great such as Turner and Sir John Soane. To extend the gallery experience for diners, Design Research Studio has designed a dramatic free-standing unit in the centre of the space. Consisting of a number of glass cubes, the structure will house an extraordinary selection of sculptures and busts dating back to 1897. The pieces belong to the Royal Academy of Arts permanent collection but have long been stored out of public view.
The new bar is set to be a key focal point in the restaurant made from Mount Etna lava stone and hand-made glazed brick. Designed as a robust, sculptural object, its grandeur is enhanced by a dramatic cast glass chandelier suspended above. Other interior highlights include digitally etched brass pendant lights and injection-moulded foam seating.
- Open Tuesday to Saturday from 6pm until midnight
Project name: The Collection
Location: 264 Brompton Road Chelsea, London SW3 2AS, England, United Kingdom
Type: Lounge / Bar / Restaurant / Night Clubs
Project Area: 250 sqm
Project Year: 2010
Completion Year: January 2011
- 2012 Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Awards – Restaurant & Bar Design Awards – Category : Restaurant or bar in another space (UK) – Shortlist
Visit The Collection Restaurant’s Website:here
Client / Owner / Developer: Peyton & Byrne
Interior Designer: Tom Dixon Research Studio, 344 Ladbroke Grove, London, W10 5BU, United Kingdom
Project Designer: Tom Dixon
Text Description: © Courtesy of Tom Dixon Research Studio, The Collection
Images: © The Collection