Burger & Lobster, UK

January 3, 2017

DesignLSM and The Light Corporation bring a warm, comfortable atmosphere to Burger & Lobster’s laest London location.

Leicester Square, London, is one of the newest homes for restaurant chain Burger & Lobster. Featuring interior design by DesignLSM and bespoke lighting from The Light Corporation, it forms part of the brand’s current expansion along with the openings of London sites in West India Quay and Holborn.

The restaurant is housed beneath the five-star W hotel’s striking exterior, in an arresting double height space with a vast mezzanine upper floor, featuring an open kitchen and dining area. DesignLSM worked to retain some of the site’s original features including the grand brass bar front, central spiral staircase and timber flooring, carefully curating these existing elements into the brand’s unique design scheme.

Inside the restaurant, a dazzling hanging light chandelier takes centre stage, designed to be evocative of the luxury hotel’s external lighting facade. The signature features of lobster tanks and bold banquette seating create an instantly recognisable connection to the Burger & Lobster brand, accompanied by the addition of a refined and relaxed downstairs bar and lounge area.

“The idea behind the look and feel of the restaurant is that diners walk in and immediately know they’re in a Burger & Lobster location,” says Tim Henderson, Director at The Light Corporation. “Having worked on every restaurant since the first opening in Mayfair, we have key signature pieces that we use across all restaurants, which includes two styles of pendants and a ribbed glass wall light. We put these in every branch, along with illuminated lobster baskets so there’s a direct palate of information available – on top of that we’re given free reign when designing the rest of the lighting elements.

“We have worked very closely with DesignLSM on all the Burger & Lobster restaurants and this most recent location was no different,” continues Henderson. “The team at DesignLSM has got a very good feel of the brand and how it can move forward. When we’re working together, we’ll bounce ideas around and make sure that all the features we put in work well together.”

For Henderson, the key role of the decorative lighting at Burger & Lobster is to bring a warm, atmospheric feel to the space; with all of it bespoke fixtures made in-house by The Light Corporation. “We’ll always use warm colour temperature lamps at Burger & Lobster, while the lighting is heavily zoned and makes use of a dimming system that we designed and specified particularly for the project,” he tells darc. “It means the walkways can make use of different light levels to the tables, and then can be different again to the features and the wall lights etc. We’re able to create a lot of scenes for the restaurant to use throughout the day, so whether customers are dining at lunch, early evening or later on at the weekend – they’re able to set up different moods and atmospheres with the lighting.

“It’s a very warm and friendly lighting scheme with the central feature giving a really warm focus to the space. The central chandelier feature spans through two floors so you can see it from any level. It has a real interest to it because at first, it’s difficult to work out what it is… but then in certain angles you can see that it’s clearly a lobster.”

Working simultaneously on all three London projects was no mean feat, with just twelve weeks to transform initial designs into a finalised project and it took a lot of energy from the teams at DesignLSM and The Light Corporation to ensure they all came together as intended and finished on time.

Looking back on the project, DesignLSM’s Projects Director Andrew Harwood concludes: “It has been a pleasure to work with Burger & Lobster and assist them with their ambitious growth – we have relished the opportunity of developing the brand and interiors as they have expanded, creating a truly recognisable personality and engaging environment. We look forward to continuing this exciting and enjoyable journey with our client.”

Pic: James French Photography