The Buddha Bar, Dubai, UAE

dpa lighting consultants provided illumination advice for the interior lighting of the themed Buddha Bar / Restaurant.

Carefully concealed light sources graze across rich fabrics exposing their texture and form and enhancing each area. The Buddha Bar has a major central space with incredible chandeliers floating in the volume that are appreciated from two levels. The surrounding areas provide a variety of intimate spaces where people can relax. One of the great joys is the multitude of locations where you can choose to linger and enjoy the resulting variety of views. The lighting chooses carefully the elements that the eye sees from each position.

The Bar itself is vibrant but understated with illumination gently enhancing the theatre behind. All the lighting is controlled on a pre-set system to provide exactly the right ambience in each and every location.

Using light of the correct intensity, direction and distribution ensures that the spatial hierarchy created by the Interior Designers is maintained and reinforced during the hours of darkness. Warm, low voltage tungsten halogen light sources provide excellent rendering of the rich textures and colours of the suspended fabrics within the restaurant.

Narrow beam downlights located between suspended fabric panels serve two purposes – illumination to the fabric themselves together with focussed lighting to seating areas and tables. Wall lights and artwork lighting maintain visual interest to the periphery by providing a degree of contrast.

Within the Dining Area, close offset lighting reveals the texture of the stone wall behind the bar area. Uniformity has been deliberately avoided so that the eye is gently drawn to individual points or areas of interest.

The lighting of the dining areas was designed so as to ensure that the correct balance was achieved between the illumination of tables (and the food to be consumed) and the other surfaces forming the boundaries of the space. In the Buddha Bar/Restaurant, the richly coloured materials and objects respond to light whilst the dark wall surfaces provide a counterbalance. In situations like these, less light often means “more”.