Benihana is a unique mix of Japanese and European styles of design, set in India.
When Benihana (Red Flower in Japanese) unfurled the doors of its restaurant in New Delhi recently, it was a five-decade old dream that came true posthumously for noted Japanese chef, the late Rocky Aoki. Ever since he opened the first outlet of this fine dining chain in the USA in 1964, he had wanted to establish a presence in India. Today, Benihana is housed in a 6,000 sq ft space at a unique location in New Delhi the Metro station at Nehru Place.
As the name suggests, Benihana celebrates the colour red. It is a recurrent theme in the dTcor, right from the string curtains to lighting and accessories. Styled by Hawaii-based interior designer Peter Vincent, Benihana is a mix of Japanese and European styles. It is divided into a Teppanyaki area, a lounge and a patio.
The plain grey stone walls of the restaurant are offset by Japanese tapestry on the ceiling, white leather upholstered chairs in wood, and nine teppanyaki tables. Wooden rafters are beautifully juxtaposed with chic LED lighting on the steel chimneys above as well as at the bar counter.
The Japanese influence can be seen in the form of wooden Shoji panels separating the Teppanyaki tables and in the tableware. Other accents include Japanese figurines, beams from old Japanese houses on ceilings and digital images of Japanese waiters on the chimney in the lounge area.
The space has been personalised by including a 1920 vintage delivery truck at the entrance that Aoki used to sell ice-creams in New York. Digital images of Aoki´s life on a wall, an image of Aoki and his wife imprinted on chains and a digital image of an old Benihana menu from 1970 on a wall in the lounge ensure that the founder of this popular fine dining chain continues to remain a fresh memory for his guests.
Truly, a great tribute to a chef´s dream!
Total Area: 6,000 sq ft
text: Varun Soni
R-5, Nehru Place Metro Station
P.D. Area, New Delhi 110019. India