Design embraces culture, pays homage to remarkable city
BOMBAY STREET FOOD | Toronto
size: 2,152 sf
completion: May 2016
photos: David Whittaker Photography Inc.
Shop! member Jump Branding & Design Inc. contributed to the design, lighting design, artwork, in-store graphics, and in-store signage
EMBRACING CULTURE THROUGH VIBRANT COLORS AND AUTHENTIC DECOR, this fast-casual restaurant takes inspiration from the streets, tea rooms, and cafes of Mumbai.
Transporting diners to another world, the project’s passionate spirit is on full display through a dazzling array of elements. Some are large, like the mural with Devanagari script. Others are small, such as door pulls from one of the country’s largest markets, the Chor Bazaar.
Evoking energy and warmth, three distinct areas provide different dining experiences — a tea room, streets of Mumbai, and the old Parsi/Irai café. Whetting appetites, ceiling fans infuse the air with flavorful aromas.
Hanging menus greet customers at the order counter. Featuring a zinc countertop and walnut archway, the area pays homage to the old cafes of Bombay, where similar spaces are a quintessential element.
Displaying photos taking during design team’s tour of the city and patterning hardcover menus after Mumbai schoolbooks also adds charm to the casual, inviting atmosphere. Decorating a back room with family photographs provides a personal touch and creates a bistro feel. Geometric tiles, sepia prints, glass lanterns, and brass tiffen boxes further enhances the culinary experience.
Other design elements adding authenticity include cladding a wall with rusted corrugated metal — a material often used in the old retail spaces lining Mumbai’s streets. Two aspirational messages in handwritten script on the metal surface resemble graffiti. Two styles of bent wood chairs also acknowledge the city’s cafes.