The renowned Musashi Izakaya Japanese Restaurant located at Haymarket, NSW has recently undergone a facelift to attract the young and adventurous. Vie Studio was engaged to take on this makeover project within a minimal budget and rebrand the restaurant with a strong oriental touch to echo the unique Japanese arts & culture.
The concept of Musashi bifurcated from the legendary Miyamoto Musashi, a swordsman and samurai who was the pioneer of the Dual Sword Technique. Exploring the idea of duality and designs of his costume, the story of this remarkable Japanese swordsman is brought to life on the restaurant walls with a vibrant twang of glamour.
The star of the restaurant is undeniably the magnificent artwork imprinted on plywood panels lining the wall, paying homage to Musashi’s fortitude and bravery. Authentic Japanese patterns herald texture and form are repeated throughout the restaurant, randomly found on customary banquet seats and on laser-cut motifs from the fascia to the feature wall within. The intense cultural expression, in contrast with the modern and contemporary approach, underlines its idiosyncrasy within the Sydney Chinatown neighborhood.
The yellow theme is deliberately applied to pop out from the heritage façade architecture and building that surround it; as well as to accentuate a fresh visual existence from its previous namesake. Following the trail of “freshness”, timber veneer has been used in all furniture, joinery and decorative items to deliver a warm ambient to the entire space. The circular and triangular torqued silhouette pendant lights have become talk of the town, a reminiscence of a rich and fascinating literature from the Land of the Rising Sun.
Designer: Vie Studio
Photographer: Andrew Worssam
Key construction material: FSC plywood, timber veneer, Japanese floral print fabrics, lasercut panels, Jean Prouvé Chairs, Prisma and Bellato wood veneer pendant lights