SpaceInvader was asked to breathe new life into the popular Albert’s bar and restaurant in Didsbury. The scheme has since gone on to win the 2020 Restaurant Design Award at the SBID's. The goal was to create a space that catered to a broad clientele – from the lunchtime coffee drinker to the evening cocktail sipper – without losing the loyal customer base built up over the past ten years.
Status: Completed 2019
Sector: Bar & Restaurant
Client: Elle R Leisure
“The crux of our design was to create multiple ambiances all under one roof, designing a space that could cater as easily for breakfast as it could for late-night drinks or a relaxed dinner for two.”
The aim from the outset was to create a space that was warm and cosy that also offered a luxury feel.
We championed a new colour scheme, switching from Albert’s hallmark blue to an earthy palette of green, brown, gold and bronze mirror, creating a warm and inviting environment. The restaurant now features striking details in these new shades including 3D wall finishings and coloured Cielo-style basins in the toilets. New greenery adds further softness and a natural feel by bringing the outside in, complemented by linear and geometric patterns used throughout the design, taking cues from 15th century design style.
An enhanced layout with new seating arrangements has helped to create a vibrant, sociable atmosphere. New banquette seating has been introduced to suit bigger parties, as well as dedicated ‘party tables’, all marble-topped and three-quarter height.
SpaceInvader also designed new booth seating at the bar, helping Albert’s to cater for events such as afternoon tea and cocktail evenings. The feature bar brings an added element of sophistication to the design, with bronze mirror set against raw black metal balancing a mix of glamour and industrial finishes, with planting weaved into the back bar to add softness.
Versatile feature lighting helps the new space transition seamlessly from day to night. Outside, the terrace has been redesigned with bespoke green geometric tiles, new booth seating and added planting for a fresh and enticing alfresco dining area to relax and spend sunny afternoons.
The project’s success means the design will now be rolled out across other Albert’s sites, each with its own distinct colour scheme, but with the same atmosphere and design elements.
“This project highlights the value of a collaborative approach, delivering a design that worked not only aesthetically, but practically, guaranteeing the best experience for both customers and staff.”
Sarah Ramsbottom, MD at Castlefield Estates, owner of Albert’s.