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Levi Roots Caribbean Smokehouse

Westfield, London

Restaurants

We worked with clients Levi Roots and Real Restaurants to create this overall brand.


Both had a very clear vision of what they wanted to achieve with the brand and interior identity. We worked closely with them to create a restaurant which could sit on the high street as a standalone restaurant and open new sites as a group collection.


For the brand to evolve successfully, it was vital that we communicated Levi’s vision and personality into the 134-cover dining space, located in Westfield Stratford City.


We collected items from Levi which he generously offered to us for incorporation. We hung his guitar - the very same one used in his famous Dragon's Den pitch - curated music from his personal collection and even displayed the only surviving photograph of him as a child.


We took inspiration from Levi’s Grandmother’s front room to create a vintage, bric ‘n brac display and homely feel as you enter the restaurant.


We worked with Levi to ensure that the design was authentic to what a Caribbean Smokehouse in East London should look and feel like. Levi's is not only a Caribbean offer, it serves a predominantly London based audience and needs to speak to them. Levi was keen to take elements of Brixton and London life and weave them into the concept.


As the site itself had such a high ceiling height, we were able to put in a mezzanine level and create zones within the space with additional structures within the space. We designed a structure with inspiration from the huts of the Caribbean. The dining hut has louvers panels that fits within a timber framework, these louvers will remain open most of the time and will come down when the space is booked for a larger group. This gives people more privacy and the operations team more flexibility. We wanted to make the pit on which the meat is cooked on a wood burning grill a focal point, so we chose to make a standalone feature. Materials include a corrugated tin roof and timber frame, cladding on the front is from an old shipping container we sourced and had the contractor disassemble and clad to the front of the pit.


On entry to the space, diners are met with what looks like a raised banquette seating area. This space is really a performance stage, which Levi was really keen on. When designing this flexible space we needed to ensure the seating would be moveable while being a feature when the space is in use as seating. Levi played at the restaurant on grand opening night and will most likely use the stage often to perform along with other artists of his choice. With high ceilings, we were able to create a theatrical feel to this space using both LED spotlights and ‘barn doors’, helping with that real stage atmosphere.


This project is exceptionally material-rich. We were quite hands on, creating many of the additional elements in our Wapping studio. Materials included corrugated steel containers clad on the pit front, vintage wooden speakers, reclaimed timbers, custom-designed waiter stations with flight and production-case counter.