When the whole planet is on a first name basis with you, you know you’re arrived. And that’s been the case Nobuyuki Matsuhisa a.k.a. Nobu for quite some time now. By way of Tokyo and Lima, the Japanese star chef landed a hailed restaurant in star-studded West Hollywood in the mid-1980s, and after striking up a business partnership with actor buddy Robert de Niro, the way to his very own stardom lay wide open. Fast forward to 2017, and Matsuhisa runs an international network of exclusive diners and hotels. In full expansion mode, the company opened a resort property on Ibiza’s sunny shores, and now, also an outpost in Shoreditch, an area of London that’s amidst an unprecedented transformation. The Nobu Shoreditch Hotel is housed in a purpose-built structure that was initially designed by Ron Arad, but later completed by Ben Adams.
Featuring overhanging floor slabs, and cantilevered steel beams on one side of the five-storey building that form a frayed edge, where a landscaped garden is terraced to provide natural light to the lower restaurant space. The interior design, meticulously concocted by local practice Studio Mica, marries modern elements with a distinct Japanese aesthetic that extends into each of Nobu Shoreditch’s 156 guestrooms and suites. Furnished with king-size beds, custom-made furniture pieces, and subtle Japanese elements, such as slatted paper screens and delicately decorated paneling. Unsurprisingly, the Nobu restaurant is the hotel’s main facility, and also a destination in its own right. Designed by Studio Pch, a studio from Los Angeles which supervised the interior design of many Nobu dining venues.
It’s flanked by an enclosed courtyard and terraces. The palette is warm and somewhat understated, incorporating an abundance wood and bronze, and the high ceiling allows for dramating lighting. Furnishings are sleek and intricate, adding up to the modern Japanese atmosphere of Nobu Shoreditch. Chef Greg Seregi is at the helm of culinary operations, serving Nobu’s Japanese-fusion dishes, including faves such as yellowtail with jalapeño, black cod miso, and wood oven roasted lobster with hokkaido scallops. And then there’s the Lobby Lounge + Bar, another buzzing social space where to sit back and relax, and the first section of the property one encounters when passing through its doors. Here, a decor of metal and stone frames the central fireplace, and the two veiled hanging sculptures create an intimate space around the bar area.
Photography: Will Pryce
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