When the Casual Dining Group got in touch to discuss relaunching one of London’s most loved brasseries, the quarter of a century old Oriel in Sloane Square, we were honoured. This was a complex and delicate brief as it meant taking an iconic French classic and opening it at none other than Heathrow Airport.
Inspired by the air travel theme, Afroditi created a concept celebrating the 1930s Art Deco movement, a bygone era in history when travelling was steeped in elegant luxury. Taking cues from some of Europe’s grandest Deco cafés, the team analysed finishes, materials, textures and colours – the attention to detail and levels of craftsmanship were second to none. Starting with the brand identity, we gave the original Oriel logotype a new lease of life via a new colour palette, strapline and range of supporting material based on 1930s patterns and geometric motifs. The interior design approach combines clean, classic proportions contrasted with highly intricate, beautifully crafted, custom made elements. Employing high gloss patterned metalwork, green veined marble tables, custom herringbone-patterned mosaic flooring, and curved banquettes; each part was designed and built to last. Soft colours set the tone for more signature features such as old station clocks, trunks, vintage travel photographs hanging on hooks and train screens dividing up the large open plan space. Travellers’ needs have been meticulously catered for too, with built-in luggage spaces, charging up stations and reading corners.