No longer does the standard uninspiring exhibition hall coffee and sandwich bar suffice, especially for an international design event. To be successful, design exhibitions need good pop-up cafes, bars and restaurants which show leading trends and use the best of contemporary furniture, lighting and innovative design in addition to providing superb food, coffee and cocktails to revitalise the tired visitor and add to the overall experience.
In Tent London & Superbrands at Truman’s Brewery in East London, the interior designed Helen Hughes has created a enclosure café of ninety nine 6m long large cardboard tubes. Operated by Benugo, the café is furnished with Bento chairs designed by Form Us With Love and supplied by Hem.com who are also at Somerset House during the London Design Festival.
On the ground floor, in a more spacious and more informal space, the Design Cafe, Hey Café London serves great coffee and a selection of Swedish foods and snacks while the design and furnishings, inspired by some of the top leading Swedish design brands, provides a space for enjoyment, eating and relaxation.
At Design Junction in the old Central St Martin’s building, Transport for London, working with the East London Liquor Company, has created the pop-up Restaurant and Bar designed by Michael Sodeau and named after the London Transport designer Frank Pick with a menu that includes good British food and contemporary cocktails including a limited edition rum specially created for the exhibition. The décor includes furniture and graphics inspired by underground stations sitting alongside a wooden life-size station created by Camilla Barnard with a witty touch of informality in the graphics.
Across the road in Victoria House, the latest trends in food and design have been brought together by the Zetter Townhouse’s Jason Catifeoglou, one of ten food and drink pop-ups providing, for example, bite-size Crosstown donuts, hand-crafted ice lollies from the Palenta Girls and the Wrong for HAY café with Noble Expresso coffee and Danish pastries, with the latest lighting by Sebastian Wrong also on display.
Innovative designs that provide ideas not just for pop-ups but also for permanent restaurants.