Simon Mullins revamps ‘Theatreland’ pub

London-based restaurateur Salt Yard Group is to open a third restaurant, with interiors by directors Simon and Sanja Mullins.

Opera Tavern, which is located in London’s Covent Garden, will serve Italian and Spanish tapas and opens tomorrow.

Simon and Sanja Mullins began working on the project in May 2010, after they were offered a site at an old Victorian Pub, which had originally been designed by architect George Treacher.

The concept behind the two-storey restaurant is to introduce a bit of food theatre into the bar area, says Simon Mullins.

The kitchen is located in the former barrel basement, and the ground-level bar features a charcoal grill and charcuterie section.

The look and feel of the interiors focuses on natural material such as sanded wooden floors, polished plaster walls and highlights the pub’s original features such as a wooden-topped bar.

For the first-floor restaurant, Mullins has used a De Gournay white gold metallic wallpaper on the ceiling, along with a palette of red, grey, gold and dark wood, for a tongue-in-cheek take on its Opera-inspired name, says Mullins.

He adds, ’It’s very theatrical. Being in the heart of “Theatreland”, that’s what we were going for.’

Mullins has used padded leather stools for the area around the ground-floor bar and bistro-like banquets for maximum flexibility.

Mullins says, ’Customers can get one experience on the ground floor and another experience upstairs.’

Opera Tavern will feature a number of large artworks, including works by 80-year-old Italian artist and former sommelier Valentino Montichello, who creates scenes from operas from a collage of vintage wine labels. ’We couldn’t have got a better fit,’ says Mullins.

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