Reservation please!

I love food. I love reading about it, watching it, cooking and of course eating. In fact, eating out I would list as one of my favorite activities to do, especially when we are travelling or in a new city. This passion runs deep!
Eat out recently announced the 2016 Boschendal Style Award winner which honors the most stand out restaurant interior in South Africa. Naturally I was interested as that is a large part of the eating out experience, and I have always loved restaurant interior design- it is such a creative specialization where you can really delve into concepts and branding, push the boundaries and have a bit of fun.

I have to say, I am seriously impressed with the interiors of the finalists. It is so inspiring to see such beautiful interiors designed by South African designers, using iconic products and furniture from some of the best creative’s in our country such as Mervwn Gys (ceramics), Haldane Martin (furniture) and not to forget the amazing artists and art.
The 5 finalists were:
Marble (Johanessburg) – WINNER
Fire is the main element of the restaurant, not just in the cooking (there is live grill taking centre place) but also in design elements through-out the interior like the Mervyn Gys wood fired tiles, photographs by Kristjan Rossouw and wooden grains on the welcome desk and bar. This restaurant just oozes style, from the sophisticated yet understated colour palette to the finishes and materials used. Love the brass detailing behind the bar.

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Marble Resturant
Marble Resturant

Ash Restaurant (Cape Town)
With an interior painted in charcoal, of course I love it! Ash has a very minimalist interior with an open kitchen. There are some emerald green pops (a colour to watch next year!) and marble tops, so some sophisticated detailing to complete the look.

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Ash Restuarant
Ash Restuarant

EB social bar and kitchen (Johannesburg)
This interior was designed by Silvio Reich and Lesley Carstens, a husband and wife team whose philosophy to architecture and design I have long admired.
I just love the industrial loft-like interior that has been created in the airy space. Contrasting this and providing pattern and warmth to the interior is wall of Mediterranean-inspired tiles and warm timber furniture which gives a great bohemian feel to the space.

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Shortmarket Club (Cape Town)
This is a Luke Dale-Roberts (of The Test Kitchen fame) restaurant. It has a distinctive sexy New York flavour about it which I just love! The interior has the feeling of a club with leather and wood used extensively and it is dark. I love that too. And it has the most magnificent wall of butterflies which was created by Peter Eastman and conceptualized by Mark Rautenbach. The butterflies are all lasercut from photographs and plans of other Dale-Robert’s restaurants. Very Clever.

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Urbanologi (Johannesburg)
This is a fascinating interior where a giant lasercut yeti is suspended from the ceiling!
It is fun and playful but oh-so-cool. I love all the red accents and graffiti artworks but my favorite detail would have to be the flooring where the herringbone parquet runs into cement. Just love that.

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With interiors like these my list of restaurants to eat at just gets longer and longer……(hopefully not my waistband!)

Recreate this space – The Outdoor Room

Following my blog earlier this week on how to update your outdoor space this summer, here is an example of a great patio with a few of the features I was writing about that you can re-create yourself using local suppliers.

Can you spot the accent stools in different textures?!

List of items and suppliers below:

  1. limestone textured paint, colour ‘misverstand’ by Earthcote

  1. karoo coffee table, Mr Price Home

  1. vase porcelain sandy tall 35cm, @home

  1. ceramic vase stripy round 20x20cm, @ home

  1. full cowskull with horns (80-89cm), Weylandts

  1. rustic square wall art, Weylandts

  1. rustic round wall art, Weylandts

  1. tribal scatters , Hertex Fabrics – contact Styleast for pricing
  1. hanging pod rope white, contact Styleast
  1. brighton rug colour earth,  Hertex Fabrics – contact Styleast for sizing and pricing
  1. minsk throws colour flax, contact Styleast for colours and pricing
  1. plantation table synthetic white, Styleast
  1. munggur bun side table,Weylandts

5 ways to update your patio

Enough with the cloudy and rainy weather! I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for summer to finally rear it’s head…. In the spirit of dreaming of summer, I wanted to share my ideas and finds for updating your outdoor room/area this season.

The principles for creating the perfect outdoor room-whether it be for lounging, entertaining or dining alfresco- has not changed in the last 2 years since I first wrote about outdoor spaces here. The key is to treat it like a room IN your house, thus merging the indoors and outdoors seamlessly.

1.Patterned Rugs

I can’t stress enough how by utilizing a rug, will change your patio or terrace and make it feel more like a room. I just love the new range of Island outdoor rugs from Hertex. The print is reminiscent of Mediterranean/Moroccan patterned tiles and the colours are fresh. A big plus about these rugs is that they are made from 100% polypropylene and can be hosed down; also the print and colour won’t fade from the sun, so they are super practical too. You can buy yours thru Styleast so contact us for sizes and pricing.


The Island Style Rugs
The Island Style Outdoor  Rugs
See how the rug defines the space even tho this is not technically a room
See how the rug defines the space even tho this is not technically a room
Again, the patterned rug helps define the space
Again, the patterned rug helps define the space


2.Introduce something concrete

Concrete is a material that have been obsessing about for a while. Whilst concrete is often relegated to industrial-style interiors only, I think the introduction of this texture really looks good in an outdoor space and compliments the rattan and timber of typical outdoor furniture.  It is also very hardy so is a perfect surface for standing up to beer bottles, wine spills and braai tongs.


A concrete coffee table
A concrete coffee table
Concrete side tables - LOVE!
Concrete side tables – LOVE!
@home are selling these dining tables at the moment with concrete tops
@home are selling these dining tables at the moment with concrete tops

3.Oversized outdoor cushions

I am not talking about scatters here, but much larger daybed-type cushions… Ideal for lounging on the deck or a summertime siesta.  This is a more casual alternative to traditional lounger, which I think suits the whole shift of current trends towards tribal inspired interiors.


Just love this idea for lazing about
Just love this idea for lazing about

4.Accent Stools

One of my favorite things to do to change up a space is to add an accent stool. Not only are they multi-functional; but they really add interest to a space as a grouping, or even alone. I love that you can use them as a surface to rest your drink, sunnies or holiday novel, but also as a stool when entertaining en-masse.   An accent stool is a great way to introduce a pop colour or new texture to your space. There are so many options available from laqured bamboo, distressed metals to glazed ceramic and raw unfinished stumps of timber (love them dipped). Here is a selection of a few

Love the Mediterranean vibe of this one, again very reminiscent of hand painted tiles
Love the Mediterranean vibe of this one, again very reminiscent of hand painted tiles
A raw timber stump will look amazing
A raw timber stump will look amazing
It is also an opportunity to add some pattern
It is also an opportunity to add some pattern
note the accent stools!
note the accent stools!
Stumps dipped in a pop colour
Stumps dipped in a pop colour

5.Add a pendant light

If your outdoor area permits, hang a pendant light. It is another subtle change that will totally transform your space.   Whether in the centre of a seating area or over an outdoor table, a pendant light will highlight the space and give it an extra something special.    Lighting is so important in creating mood and atmosphere, so in order to achieve the perfect space for entertaining outdoors this summer, pay special attention to it. Also don’t forget lots of lanterns and candles. It’s all about the glow!

The pendant lights define the dining table.. love how the texture compliments the space so beautifully
The pendants define the different zones in this outdoor patio
It’s all about atmosphere and glowy light at night


And don’t forget to accessorize your pool too! I can’t resist the fun inflatables that are taking over my Instagram…. I’ll be taking the gold swan please!

Yes please!
Yes please!


The little black book: (suppliers contact details)

Styleast for outdoor rugs and accent stools: 0720332322 /

@home Living Space for a large selection of pendant lights and concrete dining and coffee table:

So Spoilt for giant iflatables: