The recent opening of Din Tai Fung’s new Melbourne restaurant has demonstrated how the company, arguably the world’s most famous dumpling specialists, is leveraging innovative design concepts and space usage, to maintain their market-leading position in the Australian restaurant industry. Famous for their crowds and queues, Din Tai Fung’s new 235-seat restaurant occupies a major part of the fourth level of Emporium Melbourne, sharing the street entry with an exclusive gym for the guilty ones to visit after they feast.
Brainchild of Sydney and Melbourne based hospitality interior design specialists, Design Clarity, the concept is centred on the Chinese philosophy of yin-yang; opposite or contrary forces that are actually complementary in the natural world. Kristina Hetherington, Managing Director and Owner of Design Clarity, talks about the importance of a strong link between a concept and customer experience: “Each space we design for Din Tai Fung is distinctly different and a lot of thinking goes into what the target customers may desire or be driven towards when making their decision to dine out. This first venture into the Melbourne market called for a layer of sophistication and refinement in the materials and space.”
Kristina went on: “To achieve this we looked at many natural dualities, such as light and dark, high and low, hot and cold, fire and water, life and death, that are thought of as physical
manifestations of the yin-yang concept. “We represented these in the furniture, materiality and interior architecture of this design and they are reflected as complementary yet opposing elements that form a subconscious balanced environment.”
The restaurant still holds Din Tai Fung’s signature glass enclosed dumpling show kitchen but also includes a series of self-contained VIP rooms to cater for the Melbourne CBD diners.
Opening this week the finished concept has already caught the eye of many Melburnians who compare the ambience to Noma in London or Sushi Samba in New York. Proprietor, Dendy Harjanto said: “This is our third fit out by Design Clarity and we’re very happy with the results. We pride ourselves on offering the best restaurant experience within the dumpling market, and we’re thrilled that our restaurants and their ambiance match the same highest quality as our food.”