A La Mode
Mode Kitchen & Bar:
Four Seasons Hotel, George St, Sydney NSW
Any time of day and late into the night, the refined traveller can jump off a boat at Circular Quay and head straight for the sleek sanctuary of Mode Kitchen & Bar.
Situated in the ground floor of the Four Seasons Hotel, Mode is brassy and warm, the soft glow of the lighting reflecting off multiple mirrored surfaces. The cosy shades, shadows and mix of textures reference art deco design. “Our inspiration came from the exuberance and glamour of the 1920s, and the grand hotels that flourished during this era,” says Rachel Luchetti from busy Sydney design firm Luchetti Krelle.
Mode is nestled inside its own fluted-glass façade in the hotel’s foyer — guests are led into the space through a small indoor laneway. Secluded seating around the perimeter of the venue is matched with the handsome 9m-long bar in the centre, where travellers can sit to write their postcards and enjoy their cocktails, while eye-to-eye with the bar staff on the single-height bar top — inspired by the European habit of a more communal dining experience. Luchetti explains that the design team chose to match the warmth of burnished brass and honey-coloured marble with the cooler mint-coloured velvet seating and jade Smeraldo stone finishings. A huge sheer fabric artwork depicting calming images of Eucalyptus foliage hangs over the front lounge.
“We set out to create a restaurant which delivers what Sydneysiders and city visitors are looking for in a dining experience: simple, uncomplicated and delicious food in a comfortable setting with a touch of glamour,” says Simone Cordedda, Restaurant Manager, Mode Kitchen & Bar, who adds that the ability to transition between breakfast, lunch, dinner and drinks is a definite advantage.
Luchetti says that the bars and restaurants in Sydney’s hotels are changing, and part of the reason is that the city’s drinkers and diners are getting accustomed to visiting them. The key is treating a hotel bar as a venue proper, with potential beyond its location. “Hotel bars are undergoing a transformation and becoming more lively, friendly and activated, which has the benefit of attracting locals and hotel guests alike,” she explains. “Having a distinct personality or atmosphere, coupled with intimacy in the venue, are key elements to creating a successful hotel bar. Patrons should feel that they have arrived at a destination which surprises and welcomes, rather than feel like they are sitting in a featureless corner of a hotel lobby which happens to serve drinks.”