Bao: Embracing Context and Minimalism in Chinese Restaurant Design

StudioAC, a design firm based in Canada, has transformed Bao, a Chinese restaurant in Markham, Ontario, into a space that harmoniously blends with its strip mall surroundings.

Bao’s interior design revolves around two angled lines that draw attention from the street-facing windows to the open kitchen at the back. While the interior stands out amidst the neighboring shops, StudioAC intentionally kept the restaurant’s facade simple to blend into the suburban environment.

The focus was on creating a distinctive visual terminus within the repetitive box stores, capturing the essence of the strip mall context. The minimalistic approach of StudioAC is evident in Bao’s interior design. Gray micro-cement tables, benches, and stools add a sleek touch to the space, while stainless steel finishes provide both durability and striking aesthetics for the open kitchen.

By considering every piece of furniture as an integral part of the architecture, StudioAC has seamlessly integrated custom-designed tables and seating, further enhancing the overall aesthetic appeal of Bao.

StudioAC’s expertise in minimalist design is showcased not only in Bao but also in their other notable projects, such as a timber-clad bedroom house in Toronto and a luxury cannabis dispensary with faceted walls.

Rebecca Knight

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