In Use - Project

Chat Thai | Neutral Bay, NSW, Australia

Chat Thai in Neutral Bay was born out of COVID19 necessity, serving Uber Eats and takeaway meals to Sydney’s Lower North Shore residents out of a dimly lit kitchen in a vacant local restaurant. 

This culinary venture quickly changed as the new community embraced their delicious meals, however the dine-in options were less than presentable requiring a new indoor and outdoor decor and design.

Having previously worked for the Chat Thai family, Interior Designer Genine Noakes was approached to turn these areas around. Genine knew the family’s DNA, what they liked, how they operated, and their love of natural materials.

“It was an obvious choice for them to approach me on this fit-out and I was paired up with their trusted builder to bring together a new team to move forward on the project and bring it to life.” Says Genine.

The brief for the restaurant was to channel the original feel of their previous restaurants, which is dark and moody, and bring in a rich warmth using as many natural materials as possible while integrating an Asian Emporium, selling the finest Thai and Asian ingredients for the spirited home cook.

“It was an obvious choice for them to approach me on this fit out and I was paired up with their trusted builder to bring together a new team to move forward on the project and bring it to life.” 

The clients vision was for a warm and welcoming space for their diners to feel like home. This proved a challenge, as the space contained predominantly floor to ceiling glass windows and openings that looked into a very dated plaza with clinical lighting that needed to be obscured, especially during the evening.

‘We didn’t want to block it off entirely so that the restaurant looked closed. We didn’t need that many openings looking into the plaza, so I designed a combination of beautiful s-fold curtains with alternate openings fitted out with shelving, displaying the emporium of Asian goods as well as a their signature display of plants’ says Genine.

Thai culture inspired the interior design, with special touches from the old timber homes in Thailand. An outdoor dining space was recreated into a village-like tropical jungle feel. The colour palette dark and rich using blacks, browns, charcoals, bronze and golds.

Mokum fabric in Satori Stonewash, colour Oxide was perfect for the space as it addressed the elements of being 100% natural linen with a relaxed look to give it a homely feel.  

“It had a wonderful handle to allow the 3 layers we needed to block out the plaza lighting.  Two outer layers in Satori and the middle layer in James Dunlop Broadline.  This allowed us to achieve the client’s brief of creating a warm, rich and homely feel” says Genine.

Products used:

Mokum Satori Stonewash, colour Oxide

James Dunlop Broadline

Credits:

Interior Design – Genine Noakes
Photography – Luisa Brimble