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Renovation plan for the restaurant building “Yunotake” at “Kamenoi Besso” located in Yufuin, one of the leading hot spring resorts in the Oita Prefecture. The existing restaurant building had a quaint exterior with a charming roof, and its interior featured a dignified atmosphere with sturdy beams and pillars that conveyed the passage of time. However, the teppanyaki counter, which had been a focal point, had deteriorated, and its size was dominating the overall space. Therefore, the client’s desire was to reduce its size and enhance the seating area.

The main focus of the plan was, firstly, to capitalize on the building’s strengths. Secondly, we aimed to rearrange the layout to efficiently utilize the space, while creating new focal points. In addition to the existing counter, there was also a space for drink service positioned within view of the seating area. We believed that the balance between the kitchen facilities and seating was important, which led to integrating the drink service space into the main kitchen, thereby leveraging space for additional seating and private rooms. Furthermore, we introduced a wine cellar and a lounge space along the circulation path connecting the kitchen and seating area, creating a buffer zone between the two. Additionally, a reception counter made of walnut wood was installed at the entrance. With flooring made of terracotta tiles and glass partitions, we created a serene atmosphere while subtly dividing the space to welcome guests.

Another important aspect in making the most of the existing building was the lighting and ceiling design. We revised the lighting plan, originally centered around pendant lights like traditional Japanese homes, to highlight the presence of the existing beams. By removing some of the walls dropping from the ceiling, we enhanced this effect and aimed to create a sense of spaciousness throughout the upper area. Meanwhile, the flooring in the restaurant was replaced and finished in sisal, the same material as the existing floor.  By updating the overall setting with modern elements while leveraging existing features, we aimed to create a plan where old and new seamlessly coexist.

Type of Project: Interior
Use: Restaurant
Period: Sep 2022 – Dec 2023
Floor Area: 191.68m2
Location: Oita, Japan
Design: Koichi Futatsumata, Koichi Furumura (CASE-REAL)
Contraction: GRACE
Lighting Plan: Tatsuki Nakamura (BRANCH LIGHTING DESIGN)
Photo: Hiroshi Mizusaki

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