red hot

The lively re­design of Mizumi, the Ja­panese restau­rant in Wynn Ma­cau, sum­mons both seren­ity and fun.

Wynn Magazine - - CONTENTS - By Gabriel Co­hen

The lively re­design of Mizumi, the Ja­panese restau­rant at Wynn Ma­cau, sum­mons both seren­ity and fun.

Guests re­turn­ing to Mizumi in Wynn Ma­cau are in for a treat be­fore they even sit down at their ta­ble: a dra­matic, freshly imag­ined space. Pre­vi­ously the restau­rant fa­vored nat­u­ral colors of stone, straw, and wood, but as Roger Thomas, Wynn’s Ex­ec­u­tive Vice Pres­i­dent of De­sign, ex­plains, “When I look at Ja­panese art, some of the pieces I’ve most loved are red lac­quer with gold ac­cents, and that’s what in­spired the new room.” As they had done in ren­o­vat­ing Mizumi in Wynn Las Ve­gas, Thomas and his de­sign team added a coat of deep red lac­quer to the restau­rant’s split-face sand­stone walls and then ap­plied gold leaf to cre­ate what

“If I could walk into a Ja­panese writ­ing box, it would look like this.” —Roger Thomas

looks like stacks of gold. They added sim­i­larly strik­ing new colors and tex­tures to the wooden walls and ceil­ing beams. Var­i­ous other as­pects of Ja­panese art, ar­chi­tec­ture, and crafts in­flu­enced the re­design, which com­ple­ments the new menu, cre­ated in con­sul­ta­tion with three of Ja­pan’s best-known Miche­lin-starred chefs, her­alded in the culi­nary tra­di­tions of sushi, tem­pura, and tep­pa­nyaki. Din­ers may feast on del­i­ca­cies flown in from that country on a reg­u­lar ba­sis, in­clud­ing abalone from Iwate, sea urchin from Hokkaido, and mar­bled beef from Ishi­gaki Is­land. The restau­rant’s iron en­try gates, a sym­bolic nod to a 1910 gift of cherry trees from the peo­ple of Ja­pan to the peo­ple of the United States, were re­tained, but large sake bar­rels near the front door were re­moved to help cre­ate a more open, flow­ing en­trance. Above the foyer, tubu­lar red silk fish kites were hung ver­ti­cally to pro­duce a vivid chan­de­lier. The de­sign team also col­lected mag­nif­i­cent ex­am­ples of an­tique obis—bro­cade sashes worn on el­e­gant ki­monos—which they un­folded and placed on the walls to cre­ate ver­ti­cal stripes. The car­pet de­sign, based on one of the obis, was cus­tom-wo­ven for the room. The new chairs in the din­ing rooms fea­ture em­broi­dered Ja­panese fam­ily crests. The new look also re­flects Thomas’s love of tra­di­tional Ja­panese lac­quered writ­ing boxes, which held ink­stones, brushes, and other im­ple­ments. “I’ve al­ways found them to be re­mark­able works of art,” he says, “and re­ally marvelous be­cause they were also used for cre­at­ing art. So if I could walk into a Ja­panese writ­ing box, it would look like this.” Although the in­flu­ence of tra­di­tional Ja­panese art and cul­ture is un­mis­tak­able, a num­ber of lively con­tem­po­rary el­e­ments were added as well. To rein­vent and high­light Mizumi’s out­door rock gar­den, translu­cent stones were sculpted and lit from be­neath so they glow. The re­cep­tion area now fea­tures a large yel­low fold­ed­steel origami dog (“Dogami”) by Los An­ge­les–based sculp­tor Ger­ardo Hacer. The sushi bar and the pri­vate and tep­pa­nyaki rooms are graced with paint­ings by Las Ve­gas artist Sush Machida, who cre­ated col­or­ful large-scale images of waves in a style that, while very mod­ern, was in­spired by 19th-cen­tury Ja­panese wood­block prints. Over­all, din­ers may find that the new dé­cor at Mizumi has a dual im­pact. “Ja­panese art is able to evoke fes­tive and serene feel­ings at the same time,” Thomas ex­plains. “I hope we’ve man­aged to do that, too. You walk into a space that has lively en­ergy, but at the same time there’s a cer­tain amount of rev­er­ence to it. A joy­ous seren­ity.”

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