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Travel Tuesday: House & Garden's Favourite Restaurants Around the World

From eateries in Egypt, to sculptural cafes in Canada, these are House & Garden SA’s favourite design restaurants

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By Kimberley Schoeman  | October 24, 2023 | Design

What makes a beautiful restaurant? Furthermore, what makes a world-renowned award-winning, beautiful restaurant? In today’s restaurant climate, there has never been a greater (and more beautiful) dialogue between dining and design. Besides the usual Michelin Star ratings awarded to many of the world’s top chefs and restaurants, there is so much more to celebrate about the world’s most exquisite restaurants. As epicureans and lovers of good and intentional design, House & Garden SA has rounded up the best restaurants that took home prizes at the 2023 Restaurant and Bar Design Awards in London. We celebrate restaurants planted in their neighbourhoods with competent and smiley staff, all on top of stellar food and decent service.

Ojo (Bangkok, Thailand), designed by Ou Baholyodhin

Neatly perched at the top of the Mahanakorn Tower in Bangkok, Ojo and its sprawling terrace is said to be “bold and dripped in gold”. Taking inspiration from restauranteur Ou Baholyodhin journey across Central America, Ojo’s interiors are rich and jewel-toned, taking inspiration from the continent’s precious metals and gemstones. Throughout the restaurant, you will find subtle odes to the mysticism of Central America’s ancient civilizations, blended with the glitz and glamour of the world’s top restaurants.

Ojo (Bangkok, Thailand), designed by Ou Baholyodhin. Image: supplied.

Beano’s (Cairo, Egypt) designed by Shewekar

A golden thread through many of the world’s top restaurant is an elevated homage to ancient traditions and craft. At Beano’s in Cairo, Egypt, is as grand as it gets, considering Egypt’s ancient traditions that are steeped in gold and dedication to godliness. Beano’s Cafe strikes the ultimate balance between ancient Egyptian heritage and contemporary architecture, overlooking Cairo’s Grand Egyptian Museum.

Beano’s (Cairo, Egypt) designed by Shewekar. Image: supplied.

Café Constance (Montreal, Canada), designed by Atelier Zébulon Perron

There is something so whimsical about a restaurant that has a distinct feminine aesthetic with tutu-inspired lighting. This decor choice is fitting considering Café Constance (designed by Atelier Zébulon Perron), is located at a ballet school in Montreal, Canada. Picture sitting at one of the chic bistro-style tables eating a hearty Quebec lamb, while sipping on a petite café.

Café Constance (Montreal, Canada), designed by Atelier Zébulon Perron. Image: supplied.

The George (Seattle, USA) designed by Lazaro Rosa Violan Studio + MG2

There is something so handsome about the heavy, old-world design of a Brasserie where you can just imagine the legendary names that have dined here and lucrative deals that have been made over martinis. But, The George is a more modern brasserie located in the dining room of the Fairmont Olympic, which originally opened in 1924. This iconic dining room as existed as the social hub of Seattle for many decades, from playing host to fashion icons and legendary musicians, to top philanthropists and tastemakers. Lest we forget the freshest seafood and dry aged meats served with artisan cheeses from local dairies.

The George (Seattle, USA) designed by Lazaro Rosa Violan Studio + MG2. Image: supplied.

Va Bene Cicchetti (Warsaw, Poland) designed by NOKE Architects

Walking down the streets at night through Warsaw Poland, you are likely to come across a glowing red sign that reads “va bene”, with chairs and tables scattered both within and outside. Va Bene Cicchetti is Warsaw’s premier Italian-style bar serving drinks with small plates of food. While not a groundbreaking concept, the space itself is so beautifully designed making that a whole experience on its own. It is said however, that NOKE Architects who designed Va Bene Cicchetti were inspired by the tides of Venice, Italy that floods the streets of the city. To translate this effect of flooding, the floors and tiles, tables’ legs, chairs and plinths in a murky, (yet tasteful) shade of turquoise.

Va Bene Cicchetti (Warsaw, Poland) designed by NOKE Architects. Image: supplied.