Scene One: Tanjong Beach Club is the quintessential beach lover’s retreat, with a 70s California vibe put forth from cobalt banquette upholstery, baby blue rotund lighting fixtures, timber screens inspired by palm trees filtering light in, and a motif of portholes found in the breezeblock walls and circular apertures in the ceiling that traces the time of day.
Scene Two: Loof is a roof top bar with playful scalloped walls – a modern interpretation of roof shingles – and nostalgic elements such as cane chairs, intertwined with unexpected accents such as fuchsia bench seating, all encased by walls of greenery.
Scene Three: The Working Capitol is a co-working space housed in five shop houses, whose interiors have been refreshed in a fresh palette of azure, lemon and teal. Butcher’s tiles and plywood meld with luxurious marble surfaces to create a light-hearted and invigorating space that eschews stuffy work environments.
Welcome to the world of Takenouchi Webb, where pattern, colour and texture combine to create lively and sophisticated sets for living, work and play to take place. Founded by husband-and-wife couple Marc Webb and Naoko Takenouchi in 2006, the firm has dressed many hospitality venues that have come to define Singapore’s maturing Food & Beverage (F&B) scene such as The White Rabbit, The Black Swan, Whitegrass, Empress, and also Bali’s Katamama hotel, in addition to those mentioned above. Their latest project is private members’ club Straits Clan, housed in the former New Majestic Hotel, where accents of rattan and terrazzo take a page from Singapore’s past.
“We like to think our designs are not so much driven by trends or fashion and are happy to say that in the fast turnover of Singapore’s F&B, most of our projects have endured and are still in operation. We have been fortunate in working on a lot of heritage buildings in Singapore and we always look to these for inspiration. We certainly have always been drawn towards more vintage designs and the timeless qualities that they have,” shares Marc.
The firm naturally gravitate toward hospitality projects due to their previous work experiences (Marc in Kerry Hill Architects and Naoko in SCDA Architects) but it was also because of chemistry: their first client The Lo & Behold Group who tasked them to design their first restaurant liked what they saw and continued seeking their services for subsequent projects.
“It is something we both really enjoy. There is both the very practical side of the design and the drama of creating another world for guests. The greatest pleasure we have is seeing a completed project full, and people enjoying the space we have created,” says Marc on designing restaurants.
Even after 12 years, the duo never tire of working on such projects: “The more restaurants we complete, the more our knowledge is increased, but every projects is also like starting from new, with its own unique challenges and problems. In our profession, there is never any repetition.”
Photography courtesy of Takenouchi Webb
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