Stylish socialites hungry for a slice have a haute new restaurant on their radar: PizzaExpress has opened its latest shop in Birmingham’s Bullring shopping district. Its message: Ordering pizza can be just as sophisticated and sexy as dining on steak au poivre.
JHP, the London design consultancy, created the pizza shop to be a reflection of the surrounding fashion stores within the glass-enclosed Bullring center. Its personality projects a vibrant, social setting through colorful striped walls surrounding black tabletops and bench seating. A stainless-steel ventilation hood climbs from the bottom floor to the top and offsets a steel-accented staircase.
Forget about cracking open a cold one here. Each table is set with wine glasses, silverware and a single, illuminated flower centerpiece.
For a lively atmosphere, designers left the food-preparation area visible to patrons. Chefs toss dough in the air and prepare toppings on a white carrara marble pizza counter.
“We drew inspiration from four ingredients – culture, fashion, art and pizza – while designing this new restaurant,” says Steve Collis, design joint managing director for JHP.
Client: PizzaExpress, Middlesex, U.K. – Belinda Rogers, head of design; Alan Jeffery, head of property development; Neil Wickers, commercial and marketing director
Design Firm: JHP, London – David Rook, associate director; Raj Wilkinson, creative director; Steve Collis, design joint managing director
Architect: Butler Associates, Epsom, U.K.
General Contractor: Du Boulay, London
Furniture: Nica Contracts, London
Lighting: Key Electrical, Wakefield, U.K.
Signage/Graphics : Technical Signs, Watford, U.K.
Wallcoverings/Materials: Novograf, Glasgow, Scotland
Photography: Sarah Louise Ramsay, SLR Photography, London