How H2R Design modernised the Majlis concept for Emirati restaurant Kraz

Published: 8 July 2020 - 10:09 a.m.
By: Jane O'Neill

Find Emirati restaurant Kraz tucked away in a residential area of Sharjah, close to the emirate's universities.

H2R DESIGN was briefed to create an inviting space that suits the contemporary Emirati lifestyle while honouring the traditions and values of older generations.

The boutique interiors firm worked with a natural flow created by the building's architecture to invite guests into a comfortable and hospitable atmosphere with a range of seating options.

Modern chairs and tables sprawl across the central area, while the side walls nest majlis-style cushioned sofas and lowered tables. A private majlis area is also available for more intimate gatherings.

Singular tones and subtle patterns create a minimalistic ambience create harmony between luxury and simplicity, with local flair.

Inspiration for the interior of the restaurant naturally comes from the warm atmosphere found in traditional Emirati majlis - a space for gatherings and important conversations, where food, laughter and memorable moments are shared.

“Instead of changing the space into a present-day style restaurant concept, we wanted to pay tribute to the tradition of the Emirati culture and create a space that offers the beauty of the majlis seating combined with today’s popular furniture styles. This created an inclusive space, celebrating the old and the new with diners not having to compromise their way of life,” explains Hasan and Husain Roomi, co-founders of H2R Design.

Design highlights of the 140sqm space include rustic round pendants lights and beautifully carved Mashrabiya panels and benches.

Hospitality is taken seriously in Emirati culture, so H2R Design wanted to make sure comfortability took precedence.

A lot of testing and mock-ups were made for the floor seating in order to ensure the accurate height of the tables and thickness of cushions were just the right level for a person to eat comfortably. Even the space for the legs under the table had to be checked so diners don’t feel constricted.

A customised carpet was designed for the floor seating dining area and a colourful Monaco feature rug adorns the bar.

As the location is not sun-facing, along with internal lighting, natural light was encouraged into the property with breeze blocks placed in a geometric design.

The walls are covered with textured paints in hues of greys to represent the modernity that the region has become accustomed to. Handmade porcelain wall tiles were imported from Modena, Italy and mounted in the main dining area in gold and silver,

Back and white photographs of UAE’s historical architecture, environment and traditions are in each room to commemorate local heritage. The photos collected by the client, depicting local inspiration and the historical references are displayed across the rooms in tribute to the cultural customs.

To add a natural feel, hints of greenery were added all around, tying back to the oasis vibe.

The furniture is made of solid wood for a warm look, with Wishbone chairs by Wegner add a sense of timelessness to the design.

Other F&B projects by H2R Design include Tom & Serg and The Sum of Us in Dubai, and Sharjah cafe Paperfig.

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