04 Aug 2021 • Hospitality
This London post-office-turned-sushi-restaurant is a cross-cultural time warp
The conversion into Maido Sushi retains the 1960s soul of the space, creating a dialogue between European and Japanese design features while incorporating references to landmarks in the area (nearby a certain Abbey Road crossing). Clad in dark cherry wood, the interior is divided by a semicircular textured glass partition that gives way to an intimate lounge in the back; it’s a feature inspired by the façade of the neighbouring Saint John’s Wood Library. Balancing out the immersive wood finishes is a coffered sky-blue ceiling that parallels the black quarry-tile floor’s geometric motif.
On the other hand, ‘The Japanese references are subtle and present themselves through the choice of materials, the play of geometric patterns and the hand-crafted woodwork detailing,’ explain Child Studio founders Alexy Kos and Che Huang. Their furniture selection – a mix of antique, vintage and contemporary pieces – also nods to the east-meets-west approach, with Norman Cherner’s 1958 iconic moulded plywood armchairs and cast alumnium stools by Naoto Fukasawa two examples. Antique brass Stilnovo sconces, a Gae Aulenti Pipistrello table lamp and a collection of abstract paintings are the finishing touches on the time-warp hospitality interior.
This interior presents itself as a carefully considered composition: while some of the features originate from vastly different design areas, there’s no aesthetic discord to be detected here and the pieces fit as if in a puzzle. The sky-blue ceiling is a great pop against the intimate warmth of the wood, and, picturing oneself at the bar, it truly seems like a pleasing space in which to spend a Friday evening. It’s commendable that Child Studio was able to keep the modernist spirit of the post office alive in the restaurant turning that history into a gimmick.