4SPACE created an exciting concept around the story of a vagabond who travelled through various times, places and worlds whilst experiencing larger-than-life adventures. One such journey took him on travels through portals that opened into modern Arabia, where he travelled through deserts and along spice routes in Urartu, where he collected rare spices and forgotten ingredients.
Project Name: VAGA
Studio Name: 4SPACE
Architects designed a contemporary restaurant that would be home to Arabic cuisine and the colourful Armenian culture. The vibrant, futuristic lifestyle destination is Bluewaters Island in Abu Dhabi. The extraordinary space is fluid and gives a sense of movement representing the wandering, explorative nature of the namesake vagabond. The restaurant is spread over two spacious floors. On the ground floor, diners can enjoy the exclusive pods, which sit directly beneath an eye-catching chandelier of large metallic rings decorated with intriguing symbols and letters from the Vannic alphabet. Theatrical blue lighting highlights the unique centrepiece.
Copper tiles frame two large windows and afford diners views into the kitchen and the busy chefs. Impressive reflective and textured steel ceilings are throughout the ground floor, giving a sensual visual depth to the space.
Upstairs is where VAGA comes alive. A contemporary and minimal red staircase connects the ground and first floors. An impressive bar is the heart and soul of the dining area. The interiors are in keeping with the lower floor with bright blue highlights and subdued terracotta tones. The ripple-effect steel ceiling adds mystery and an illusion of an upside-down parallel world. Revellers who want a hint of secrecy can head to the private room through an traditional red Arabic wooden door into a land of speakeasy fantasy.
4SPACE has intricately designed two separate spaces whilst retaining various design influences. The ground floor represents the strong Armenian culture, whilst the first floor is Arabic-inspired. The designers have ensured sensitive authenticity throughout. What lies between are times undiscovered and the mysterious elements discovered in VAGA’s time portal. 4SPACE sourced and imported exquisite volcanic ash stone slabs from Armenia. This glorious orange-hued stone covers many Armenian buildings; the depth and warmth of colour are reflected throughout VAGA and contrast beautifully with turquoise and grey chairs. There are three terraces throughout the restaurant, one that boasts views across the Jumeirah Beach Residences coastline and into the pods of the Ain Dubai. The other terraces are inside and are perfectly temperature controlled.