Ora — Kuwait City, Kuwait
Japanese and Kuwaiti traditions meet in the interior of Kuwait City’s latest outpost of Ora – a Japanese tapas restaurant that has had a presence in the city since 2014. Crafted by its founding Japanese chef Tiger Mizuta, who was formerly executive chef at Katsuya in Los Angeles, Ora’s menu is made up of elegantly-presented tapas-sized sharing plates such as yellowtail tacos, maple miso lamp chops and tempura corn.
The interior, by Dubai-based T.ZED Architects, is designed to reflect the origins of the cuisine. A palette of warm colours and natural materials are designed to age gracefully while the interlocking ash ceilings and partitions are made using traditional Japanese joinery techniques. ‘We intended to remain as earthy as possible in order for the artwork, as well as the food, to provide all the accent colours,’ explain the architects.
Taking care to acknowledge the restaurant’s local context, the architects created a versatile interior which allows for large groups of friends to congregate for a social dining experience, while at the same time offering niches for more intimate dining.
‘The overall layout of the restaurant, as well as the decision to create private dining rooms with independent accesses, responds directly to the Kuwaiti culture,’ they say. ‘Privacy is always a key component when designing projects in Kuwait and the Gulf in general.’ §