A new restaurant building and leisure destination has opened on Duke of York Square in the heart of Chelsea. Designed for Cadogan, the building forms the final element in the redevelopment of the square. Housed within the space is Vardo – an eclectic restaurant by the team behind Caravan Restaurants.
▼项目鸟瞰，aerial view of the project © Simon Harvey
Nex were commissioned by Cadogan following an international design competition that sought a distinctive building which could be a focal point for the square. Nex created further value by incorporating a new rooftop public space with extensive greenery, enhancing the square in the midst of the bustling King’s Road.
▼从广场看建筑，viewing the project from the square © Simon Harvey
▼从运动场远看建筑，viewing the project from the playground © Simon Harvey
▼项目外观总览，overall of the project appearance © Simon Harvey
Referencing the adjacent Grade II listed wall of the Duke of York Headquarters, the restaurant’s spiralling form is defined by a slender off-white concrete wall that curls upwards from the square. While the large openings at ground level housing the main restaurant space can be seen as a classically-informed colonnade, its striking form nevertheless gives the restaurant an unmistakably contemporary character.
▼立面上设置了大面积的拱形开口，可谓是古典式的柱廊的现代化表达，the large openings at ground level housing the main restaurant space can be seen as a classically-informed colonnade © Simon Harvey
▼独立的室外楼梯可上至屋顶花园，separate outdoor staircase leads up to the roof garden © Simon Harvey
Open freely to the public and accessed independently by a gently curving staircase from the square below, the garden offers a peaceful environment for people to relax, eat their lunch or simply spend time among the canopies of surrounding trees.
▼屋顶花园，roof garden © Simon Harvey
▼屋顶花园为人们提供了一个放松休憩的理想场所，roof garden provides an ideal place for people to relax © Simon Harvey
The curved precast concrete ribbon culminates in the centre with a three storey service core. Within the interior, delicate structural arches emphasise the airy spaciousness of the restaurant, and replicate the patterning found in the smooth, polished concrete edges of the external building form. Polish black granite terrazzo flooring is complemented by the intricate ceiling, where ash wood slats are carefully arranged to celebrate the building’s spiral form. Interior furnishing is completed with natural woods, stones, fabrics and planting.
▼主要餐厅空间，main restaurant area © Simon Harvey
▼餐厅内部采用了与外立面相同的拱形元素，The interior of the restaurant uses the same arched elements as the exterior © Simon Harvey
The building has also been designed as a restaurant for all seasons. Set within the colonnade, the large glass panels are retractable, completely opening up the ground floor space during fine weather and allowing the restaurant to spill onto the surrounding square. The moving façade is the first example of a retractable curved glass system in the world, championing innovation while celebrating a mechanism that is as simple as a weighted sash window, sliding down gracefully into a basement trench. This allows the ground floor to be fully naturally ventilated, which is rare for a busy 120 seat restaurant. A unique dynamic façade transforms the building into a naturally ventilated pavilion at the flick of a switch that has allowed the restaurant to continue to safely welcome guests through the challenges of the CoVid pandemic, and ensured that the square has continued to be a lively place for everyday life in the city.
▼可伸缩的曲面玻璃幕墙系统，the retractable curved glass system © Simon Harvey
Dedicated to sustainability, the building achieves BREEAM ‘Excellent’, making it one of the greenest restaurants in London, with the retractable glazing forming part of a semi-passive system to maximise performance and minimise energy consumption.
▼外观细部，details of the exterior © Simon Harvey
▼室内细部，details of the interior © Simon Harvey
▼灯具与家具细部，details of the light and the furniture © Simon Harvey
Alan Dempsey, Founder of Nex, says: “As a practice, we strive to create architecture that is defined by Place, People and Atmosphere. We have worked closely with Cadogan and Caravan to translate this vision into a new leisure destination in the heart of Chelsea. With the restaurant now open, and the public rooftop garden full of life, we’re excited to see that the building has transformed the use of Duke of York Square. It has also been remarkable to see how the design of the building has responded to the challenges of the CoVid pandemic: the naturally ventilated interior and dynamic glazing that allows tables to spill outside has enabled the restaurant to continue to safely welcome guests through this time, and ensured that the square has continued to be a lively place for everyday life in the city.”
▼夜景，night view © Simon Harvey
▼总平面图，master plan © Nex
▼首层平面图，ground floor plan © Nex
▼屋顶花园平面图，roof garden plan © Nex
▼地下平面图，basement plan © Nex
▼透视剖面图，perspective section © Nex
▼节点大样，detail section © Nex
Project size：640 m2
Lighting Design：DHA Design
MEP Engineer：E&M Tecnica
Project Manager：Capital & Provincial
Heritage Consultant：Donald Insall