Riyaz Amlani’s national franchises of cafe-style bars, social has launched its dining: social with distancing, according to the post-covid, new normal at NCR’s Dwarka. With bio-bubbles six feet apart, collapsible shutters and blinds, and staggered two-storey seating arrangements. The interesting thing is, that it was conceptualized way before the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country. And was slated to launch in March 2020.
Arora’s inspiration for the design generated from the trip he’d gone to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, where he’d seen how local materials conical leaf hats, stilted flood-proof houses, a proliferation of bamboo-seamlessly composed the urban landscape.
Vietnam’s stilted houses inspired the hotel’s elevated seating section, an opportunity afforded by an impressive 16th ft height. The units are structured like a grid, constructed in steel frames clad in teak finish Russian Birch plywood that references the timber lines of traditional Vietnamese architecture. Terrazzo floors of kaddapa stone in white cement mirror this grid formation, cast as series of boxes set within the large framework. At the intersection of different zones of the restaurant, the terrazzo flooring is interrupted by a circle of creating a concrete paver cobblestone, at the centre of which is the impression of an old Vietnamese manhole cover. Concrete reappears in conical dome lights that are shaped like the iconic leaf hats of Vietnam. As a final flourish, Arora has sprinkled the space with tropical greens, a homage to the banana and bamboo vegetation after defines the Vietnamese landscape.
The spatial planning is also highly inspired by the structure of its neighbourhood Dwarka. There are units of houses and roads and at the road intersection, comes the node. The flooring matches this blueprint, with seating arranged within a grid of walkways, that happen to be 6ft wide.
FOR TODAY’S CLIMATE
A lot of furniture at retro has been repurposed from the brand’s other locations across the city. The result is the composite of granite table-tops, original leather benches, Jeanneret-inspired cane back chairs, teakwood tables and tables topped with slabs of concrete. Despite its strong contextual ties to these unprecedented times. Arora has made space for the restaurant to thrive long after the days of social distancing are done.
The hotel is operating with strict regulations in response to the pandemic. Safety measures include temperature checks and sanitizer dispenser at the entrance, hourly temperature checks for all the staff, QR code accessible menus and disposable cutlery. The number of people allowed is limited.