MARU is a new concept driven by two successful Shanghai restaurateurs, owners of well-known spots like Homeless and Bohemia. MARU was conceived in order to capture a gap in a hot local market near Wujiaochang on DaXue Lu that was in need of a higher range bar/restaurant that specializes in live music.
The layout was driven by three main factors: performance stage for live gigs, open kitchen and an attractive bar. Based on the shape of the raw space, the kitchen and bar perfectly laid out in a linear fashion down the entire space leaving a strong visual impact by the kitchen and creating an obstruction free open dining space. The dining space was further broken into two zones specifically for dining and drinking, where a stage became central to the latter with clear views to performances.