Project: Japanese Restaurant Robata Dining AN
Architects: Mamoru Maeda
Location: Le Thanh Ton Street, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Area: 40 sf
Photographs by: Courtesy of Mamoru Maeda
Japanese Restaurant Robata Dining AN by Mamoru Maeda
Today we have something slightly unusual as most commonly we showcase contemporary residential projects. However, this new project is a renovation of a Japanese restaurant in a vibrant Vietnamese street in Ho Chi Minh City. Okay, so what’s the catch? Well, the restaurant is only 40 square feet. Have a look!
We have renovated the 3.7㎡ storeroom of “JAPANESE RESTAURANT Robata Dining AN”. It has been remodeled into an Instagram-spot on the downtown main street.
I thought about revitalizing the entire downtown area.
Located on Le Thanh Ton Street, the largest downtown area in Ho Chi Minh City. There are only restaurants, clubs, bars, massages and hotels in this area.
Facing “LêThánh Tônstreet”, the second floor of the facade was used as a 3.7 warehouse. I felt it was not very interesting. I wanted to enhance the value of the restaurant by modifying the facade, and at the same time to impact pedestrians and revitalize the city.
I think Japanese restaurants have two patterns overseas.
One is a Japanese manager and almost all customers are Japanese. The other is a foreign or local manager who has almost all customers, both local and Western. This restaurant is managed by Japanese. But I wanted a restaurant that foreign customers want to go to.
By incorporating the elements that foreigners like, I have created a place where foreigners think, “I want to sit in this seat of this shop!”
The theme is “TONOSAMAT’S HARAKIRI”. (“TONOSAMA” = “Old Castle Boss”, “HARAKIRI” = “suicide by stabbing my tummy with a sword”) He expressed the sorrow of dying in his room in his palace.
Gold is a symbol of richness, red is the color of blood and the expression of sadness. The sword was used for the object, the bamboo was broken, and the red LED was inserted.
“HARAKIRI” is expressed by art.
Furniture is made of antique material, and we wanted to capture the hearts of foreigners by creating the old-fashioned look. I also thought about creating a place where I wanted to take pictures from outside. I wanted to create a place to be an Instagram spot on “Lê Thánh Tôn street”.
If this is a sign of a meeting place, I thought that not only “JAPANESE RESTAURANT Robata Dining AN” but also “Lê Thánh Tôn Street” as a whole will be activated into a fun place and create a synergistic effect.
-Project description and photographs provided by Mamoru Maeda