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Tbilisi comes to London in new Holloway Li-designed bakery, Entreé

The Notting Hill outpost marks the first UK opening for the Georgian-born chain.

01/03/2022 2 min read

Already a high-street presence in Tbilisi and Baku, Georgian bakery chain Entreé chose Notting Hill for its first foray into the UK – partnering with Holloway Li on the esoteric interiors.

Inspired both by the traditional Georgian supra, a shared feast, and Wes Anderson’s cinematic tour de force, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Entreé is devised as a ‘deconstructed shopfront’. It also draws its cues from the world of theatre, not just in the bold teal and plum colour palette and graphic trappings, but in the spatial planning. The area between the façade and kitchen is structured much like the layered region between an audience and backstage – the design team conceiving the shopfront as the ‘apron’, the café area as the ‘stage’ and the serving zone as the ‘proscenium arch’. Backstage is the kitchen then, with guests treated to occasional glimpses behind the scenes via a counter window.

In terms of materiality, Holloway Li looked to Tbilisi’s heritage – the rough pitted plaster and limestone tiling referencing the rendered houses of the city’s old town. Indeed, Tbilisi’s colourful legacy is the lens through which much of the project has been envisioned, the name, meaning ‘entrance’, a nod to the city’s historic status as a gateway between East and West.

“We were sparked by how the textures and colours of ‘old’ Georgia (the domed sulphur baths, the byzantine brickwork, the wooden balconies and Caucasian rugs) sit restlessly next to the grittiness of ‘new’ Georgia (with its repurposed Soviet buildings and monuments). We tried to capture this combination subtly, through the controlled use of texture, textile and ornament,” says Holloway Li’s Emily Mak.

Photography: Ruth Ward

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