Ar. Abhigyan Neogi of Chromed Design Studio designs a cool and happening restaurant Social for Impresario at Nehru Place, New Delhi
Seamlessly integrating the uber chic vibe of an urban stadium with the authenticity of Old Delhi, Ar. Abhigyan Neogi of Chromed Design Studio created a stimulating environment for the Social restaurant at Nehru Place in a heart of New Delhi.
When asked about the brief, Neogi quoted the client – Social is a space that blends the best of the office and the café. Combining work and play, it’s an urban hangout designed to take you offline while still keeping you connected. Social is a collaborative workspace, a hub for artists and innovators.
“So it had to be an everyday inspirational space which also stressed upon the use of things through ‘jugaad’; in tune with their common theme yet be distinctive in character from the rest,” he says.
The 90s Blend
The outdoor elements at the main entrance are dedicated to the 90s pirated enthusiasm of walkman and MS DOS. Also, the old doors and windows facade highlight the rustic space. One of the entries at Social replicates the character of a dingy street in a cramped locale like those in Old Delhi. The designers have maintained the design philosophy of minimal intervention and maximum up-cycling. The indoor elements emphasises on the Ferris wheel-style enclosures replicating the character of a fair in Old Delhi dazzled with chunks of bulbs, stadium-like stair seats, hanging chairs and tables illuminating the area and the local DJ look with the band banner. The Nehru place wall next to the DJ console brings about the characteristics of the IT setting it beholds with computers, CPUs serving as wall greens.
The space is divided into two floors, one being a mezzanine level. The ground floor lounge hosts some workspace and the restaurant-café-bar with DJ area. The area adjacent to the DJ console doubles up as a dance floor with flexible tables which can levered up merging with the lighting scheme. The mezzanine floor is all about the workspace. As a workspace it offers a casual ambience with fun elements.
“The ceiling height given to us was 17 feet. So our design had to be based on utilising height and converting it into ample carpet area. We replicated a conventional stadium by layering and segmenting as we proceed upwards to the mezzanine level. We also used comforting and easy materials from our everyday life to make it more realistic yet creative,” says Neogi.
Neogi believes that a lot of experimentation goes in designing a public space like a restaurant, as it is directly associated with people. “We worked with various lighting installations in-house like bike headlights and copper pipes dwelling together in one space. Then the furniture doubling up as false ceiling design and seating space or the bar cyclist chairs emphasising on the mood created cycling down the streets of Old Delhi,” adds he.
The furniture gives Social, Nehru Place the feel of a rustic setting amalgamating the fabric of Nehru Place, the openness of a stadium with in line seating and the dazzling Ferris wheels from old Delhi which are made of 100 per cent recycled or recyclable materials juxtaposed with varied special elements like these enhancing the vernacular character of the space.
An enriched vibe can be experienced through the various tones of earthy woods, brick painted white and some dollops of colour namely green, yellow and blue through the Ferris wheels.
Talking about the lighting scheme, he says, “The bar lighting is made through air conditioning copper piping tangled with bulbs, the stadium seating lighting insulations are actually the bike highlights fitted with bulbs and the ceiling lights are furniture with bulbs on each leg.”
Keeping functional quality as well as aesthetical excitement in mind, they used painted metal and wood as core elements with tiles flooring, painted exposed brick walls and painted ceilings.
Text credits: Ar. Himani Ahuja