How to design a restaurant

Interior designer Suzy Nasr recently completed work on Indie in DIFC.

October 17, 2016

Suzy Nasr is the visionary interior designer behind some of the best-looking restaurants and rooftop bars in the UAE.

She took some time out from her busy schedule to talk to us about what goes into the designing of a new restaurant, and how she marries the furniture to the food. 

How important is the type of restaurant to your design ideas? 

When I’m asked to design the interior of a restaurant the first question I ask is always about the type of cuisine. Food is the most important component in my design. Everything stems from the food concept as it defines the type of seating, the type of lighting, and the clientele. 

What is the aim of your designs?

When people walk into a restaurant that I’ve designed I want to make them feel at ease with the environment. I encourage them to connect with the design, the materials, the colours and ambiance so that they inhale the new venue in a pure, non-filtered way.

Where do you take inspiration from?

The neon sign at Indie that says ‘If you don’t belong don’t be long’ is inspired by my travels. When I saw the quote it resonated with me. I felt that Indie was the perfect place to bring it to life in the most creative and non-offensive way possible. I find it inspirational as it encourages you to be you, to feel free, and to feel liberated.

Do you have a favourite venue? 

The most beautiful restaurant or bar I’ve ever been to, without a doubt, is Iris Beirut (below). It is a venue very close to my heart.