Pass the salt… we take the interior designer’s tour of Sydney’s newest Tequila bar – the brainchild of former Miss Universe Jennifer Hawkins and her husband Jake Wall.
To design and fit out the glamorous space at The Star in Sydney, Interior designer Georgina Holmes of Coco Republic took inspiration from the couple's passion for Mexico found on their travels.
What was the brief from Jennifer and Jake to design the Sesión pop up bar?
We wanted to take a fresh approach to a ‘Casino Cocktail Bar’. The Sesión brand is authentic and natural so the bar had to have the same overall feeling, where possible we used natural materials in timber, marble and real greenery (even the moss around the pillars is real!)
Jen & Jake told us Sesión Tequila is their drink of choice and, without a doubt, tastes best when sipped in good company — bringing people together to share memorable moments. We needed no more for the brief than that! We created areas that allow for people to connect with each other, whether it be a girl’s night out on the dancefloor or comfy sofas to snuggle up in – drink in hand.
Were there any “must haves”?
Working on a pop-up always allows for some fun to be had with the furniture selection. We had to ensure that the concept was flexible allowing for the space to evolve organically, while ensuring that the high standards of our clients were met. From a design aesthetic, the must haves were the VIP lounge suite and the mix of casual leather and lux velvet.
How closely did you work together on the project?
Very closely. Learning about the inspiration behind Sesión and Jake & Jen’s passion for the development of the brand really set me on the right path for the overall look and feel for the design. They both have such a great eye for design themselves, and gave me the tools I needed to choose the scheme. They were heavily involved - even down to unpacking and setting up for the launch party.
Where did you find inspiration when designing the space?
London/European cities with chilled out roof tops that turn into members-only cocktail lounges in the evening provided my inspiration for the space. Some of my favourite haunts, like Soho House are top of the game at making this aesthetic transition.
What ideas can our readers apply to their homes?
Transitional spaces. I love designing areas that have more than one use or feel. A dining area that can be a family space by day, that in the evenings can transform into the feeling of an intimate dinner party. Choosing the right fabrics and lighting are key to any space having this capacity.
What are the must haves for a home bar design?
Texture. Glass, leather, marble and a great bar cart! Try the Timothy Oulton Hudson Bar in Leather for larger spaces or the Jonathan Adler Jacques Bar Cart – a beautiful addition to any room, big or small.
What designers are peaking your interest?
I am a lighting junkie and material obsessive so I am always on the lookout for innovative, experimental designers and product. I am desperate to visit Jackalope (Mornington Peninsular) just to experience the ceiling at the Doot Doot Doot restaurant. Designed by Jan Flook there is a 10,000 bulb chandelier that represents the process of Fermentation. Beyond fabulous!
What other projects have you worked on?
Having lived in cosmopolitan cities throughout Europe I have had the pleasure of working on some unique and diverse projects from high end boutique hotels and spas to trendy underground bars. Each and every project allows you to express your creativity as a designer and represent differing styles and aesthetic. We have just finished designing a very unusual communal office space in Pymble which will offer a unique work environment to small business, works are due to complete at Christmas so I can't wait to see the space.
What is your next project?
The next project I am working on that I am particularly excited about is a multi-residential interior design project. I love working on new property developments as you start at the very beginning, working alongside the architect and get to see the building design take shape. Through the kitchen/bathroom design and materiality selections we give the development a personality and individual aesthetic. Designing residential spaces is very rewarding as front of mind is the potential purchaser/residents’ practical needs and livability. Creating a space that is both functional and beautiful and very satisfying.
For more information on The Sesión Green Room, click here.