Project: Cino Restaurant
Interior design: Studio UNLTD
Architect: Brian K. Fujiwara, BFK & Associates
Project Team: Terri Robison, Greg Bleier, Becky Becheanu
Lighting Design: Studio UNLTD
Client: DB Restaurant Group
Location: Honolulu, United States
Project Year: 2021-2023
Area: 278 square meters interior / 65 square meters exterior
Photo Credits: Chris Rohrer
With the opening of Cino Chophouse and Crudo Bar, Los Angeles-based Studio UNLTD celebrates the unveiling of its first design project in the Hawaiian Islands. Encompassing the interiors, facade, and patio of a 3,000 square foot restaurant with 700 square feet of outdoor space, the project is located in the ‘A’ali’i shops at the Ward Village mixed-use development, overlooking Victoria Ward Park on O’ahu, Hawaii.
As the flagship restaurant for a growing and innovative restaurant group, it was important to the client that the design be bold and transportive. Informed by a global perspective, the design team met the directive with an elevated, holistic ambience that will play a part in the group’s mission to bring meaningful change to the dining landscape in Hawaii.
The interior of Cino Restaurant, Honolulu is a striking convergence of maximalism, Art Deco, and contemporary styles, where saturated colors intermingle with plush florals, animal prints, and crisp geometric shapes in unexpected ways to create a complex visual feast for the eyes. In the spirit of an eccentric artist’s apartment, the 3,000 square foot restaurant interior is composed of three distinct areas: the main cocktail bar and lounge at the entry, a dedicated raw bar, and the main dining room.
The cocktail bar is flanked by the smaller raw bar which echoes its design features, including a ribbed bar face of teal-blue tile, amazonite marble bar top, decorative brass shelving, and a slatted, baroque-inspired molding that arches over the back bar. Overhead, a hexagonal chandelier of polished brass is set in a mirrored recessed cove, casting an ambient glow over the space and creating a dramatic focal point in the room. Facing the bars are twin curvilinear banquettes in sumptuous fabric whose palette of pinks, gold, chartreuse, and claret is formed by an explosion of giant flower petals. The softness of the room is accentuated by translucent, purple drapery. Underfoot, marble-look black and white porcelain tiles are laid out in an oversized diagonal chevron pattern that weaves through, and visually links, the three spaces.
Deep mulberry is the dominant color in the main dining room, serving as the backdrop for layers of flora and fauna prints, textured upholstery, and large chromatic portraits of exotic animals. Plush velvets surround, including an ultra-feminine floral print banquette and dining chairs in saturated Kelly-green velvet. Additional accents include polished brass and high-gloss table tops, layering in a touch of luxe glamour to complete the Avant Garde vibe.