Valencia, Spain is perhaps not the first place one might think to find a traditional Japanese sushi restaurant, but the city’s recently opened Nozomi Sushi Bar is just that. The interior is designed by Masquespacio studio and creative consultancy, a company founded in 2010 by Ana Milena Hernández Palacios and Christophe Penasse. Originally, the founders simply aimed to combine their two areas of expertise -- marketing for Penasse and design for Palacios -- but this desire quickly ballooned into a full-service design, branding and strategy firm that has now worked on projects in Norway, Germany and Spain.

Still, the company’s Euro roots didn’t stop Palacios and Penasse from translating their admiration for Japanese culture into the very DNA of Nozomi. Every part of the eatery, from the ceiling beams to the floor, was designed deliberately and with the intention of creating a wholly authentic experience. Even Nozomi’s name has a meaning: it refers to Japan’s high speed bullet train, but also translates to “fulfilled dream.” And for many reasons, the space does indeed represent a dream fulfilled for restaurant owners José Miguel Herrera and Nuria Morell.

At the core of Nozomi is a desire to express duality in design. Duality in this instance is not an equal representation of Herrera and Morell’s differing tastes; it is rather striking a balance between creating the fantasy of walking down a Japanese street, and then arriving in a courtyard where a beautifully considered, traditional meal takes place.

The entrance marks the beginning of this two-part fantasy. There, an imposing concrete facade -- meant to pay homage to historical Japanese carpentry -- greets visitors. Upon entering, guests are confronted with two corridors, both of which lead to the central lounge area. The narrow passages serve as both decorative and theatrical elements as they are modeled after architecture found in the Eastern region of Japan, and are also reminiscent of landmarks you’d find in a village or town. For instance, there is a reinterpretation of a marketplace and pharmacy, complete with cabinets, doors and windows.

In the second part of the fantasy, guests enter the main courtyard where Nozomi's food is served. Even when seated, the view is focused on a central point: the restaurant’s take on the mobile fast food stall of traditional sushi peddlers. When guests look skyward, they find whimsical, faux cherry blossoms bedecking the ceiling, lending to the illusion of sitting in a Japanese courtyard under a cherry tree.

  • Source:Trendland

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