Yau calls in Future Systems for Battersea site

Acclaimed restaurateur Alan Yau is masterminding the designs for a luxury Japanese dining and entertainment venue that will sit inside a former turbine hall in the redeveloped Battersea Power Station in London.

Yau has commissioned architect and design group Future Systems to develop the concept, including the interiors, which will offer customers a platter of facilities. These will include private suites with state-of-the-art video and entertainment hardware and a Japanese ‘onsen’ spa bath at the roof level, which ‘promises stunning views of the London skyline as customers bathe and dine’, according to Yau.

The entertainment elements represent Yau’s first venture beyond the restaurant sector, having made his name with the Wagamama, Hakkasan, Busaba Eathai and Yauatcha venues.

Although designers are currently working on the project, a licence and planning permission are yet to be granted by Wandsworth Council, which controls the Battersea region. Future Systems is currently completing a preliminary feasibility study for a 5800m2 site ‘within the triple-height volume of one of its former turbine halls’, says Yau.

Operated by Yau’s Hakkasan company, the as-yet-unnamed venue will allow customers to book private suites by the hour. There will be around 50 rooms, varying in size, each fitted with entertainment equipment for exclusive use.

It is thought that Isometrix is developing the club’s lighting design, having previously worked on Yau’s restaurants. A graphics specialist such as Bibliothèque is likely to be brought in if planning permission for the venue is granted.

Battersea Power Station and the surrounding 15ha site are being developed by Hong Kong Parkview Group. The masterplan will convert the site into a major retail and leisure destination, offering a conference centre, cinema, restaurants, hotels and bars. The plans include Upperworld, a futuristic hotel conceived by Ron Arad Associates (DW 2 September 2004).

ALAN YAU TIMELINE

1992 – Wagamama: first restaurant, designed by John Pawson

1999 – Busaba Eathai: interiors designed by Christian Liaigre; multimedia menu by Tomato; graphics and identity by North

2001 – Hakkasan: interiors by Christian Liaigre; graphics and identity by North

2004 – Yauatcha: interiors by Christian Liaigre; graphics, identity and packaging by North

Forthcoming – Hakkasan Chowbar: scheduled for delayed autumn 2005 opening in London’s Soho; graphics by Bibliothèque

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