For its work on Tokyo Tokyo’s flagship store, JJ Acuña / Bespoke Studio was recently awarded the Best Restaurant Architecture and Interior Design Firm – Southeast Asia award at the 2019 Build Architecture Awards. The Hong Kong-based firm is award-winning Filipino architect JJ Acuña’s concept architecture and interior design studio, under which he’s worked on several restaurants such as Elephant Grounds Coffee in Hong Kong.

Tokyo Tokyo’s redesign saw Acuña favoring Japanese references such as Hotel Okura and fusuma screens, as well as non-Japanese ones such as the 1983 film Blade Runner. The 3,750-sq. ft. flagship store also heavily feature grids, black metalwork, and Japanese patterns. 

 “The first questions our designers considered was how to make a fast casual restaurant more humanistic in its approach to making a customer feel better about themselves before and especially after a meal, and then how could our designers make design moves that are considerate of culture, not just Filipino culture, but also Japanese culture, without having to offend, ‘Disney-fy’ or simplify either to find a complete design,” said Acuña.

Launched in 2015, the Build Architecture Awards recognizes both architecture corporations and small studios by selecting from a pool of online nominees put forward by BUILD magazine’s subscribers and social media followers. 

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