Pier 17 in Manhattan’s South Street Seaport district recently went through a rebirth: SHoP Architects revived the historic East River site with a multi-program public space featuring an impressive channel-glass facade. The 27,870-square-metre building and its outdoor realm boast shops, arts and recreation spaces, and dining spots.
One of its exciting new restaurant tenants is Bar Wayō, a part of David Chang’s Momofuku empire. The venue was created by DesignAgency, which is turning out to be Chang’s go-to firm for dazzling restaurant interiors. Helmed by Allen Chan, Matthew Davis and Anwar Mekhayech, the Toronto studio masterminded Momofuku’s Toronto and Las Vegas locations as well as Chang’s latest ventures: Majordomo in Los Angeles and, in New York’s Hudson Yards, Kawi and Peach Mart.
Inspired by the green glass and zinc cladding of SHoP’s architecture, DesignAgency created a welcoming entrance into the restaurant’s 50-seat riverside patio with a boxy terrace featuring a teak pergola. From this al fresco space, patrons enjoy sweeping views of the newly re-energized East River.
The firm delineated the restaurant from the main structure with massive glass garage-style doors that lead into a casual ambience defined by bar seating and standing-room service. The white-oak interior has its own eye-pleasing views: It features a 27-seat wraparound terrazzo bar and dining counter under the coffered ceilings – inset with perforated copper and outlined in light.
On one side of the restaurant, a wall of illuminated glass fridges puts the goods on prominent display. From fresh produce to aged meats, the ingredients feel like art works. The back of the bar is clad in “botanical tiles” (a collaboration between DesignAgency and Glithero) in jade tones with “ghostly impressions of plant life.” The details make this space as worthy of attention as the views that are drawn in through facade-side windows.
The latest collaboration between David Chang’s empire and Toronto interiors studio DesignAgency features spectacular views – inside and out.