Going Green at Bondi’s Eden
This plant-based restaurant is infused with foliage, textures and natural materials that match the positive intent of its menu
Recent years have seen increased awareness of a wholefood, plant-based diet, and Australian entrepreneur and nutritionist Simon Hill is one of the voices leading the way. His Plant Proof project, which includes a podcast, blog and Instagram account, has worldwide followers who tune in to hear Hill and his guests present evidence-based information promoting a plant-based lifestyle.
Located at Bondi Beach’s Campbell Parade, Eden is Hill’s new hospitality venture (founded with his partner Tanya Smart) that aims to offer an experience based on the Plant Proof philosophy. Designed by New South Wales-based De Simone Design, the restaurant, bar and branding all reflect and celebrate the founders’ ethos and vision, and are inspired by the plant-based menu and beachside setting. ‘The interior needed to be ethically sensitive and visually uplifting to match the positive intent of the menu,’ says designer Edward de Simone. ‘To generate this kind of positive energy, we created a light, airy and plant-infused space with a variety of textures and patterns.’
Eden can accommodate up to 80 guests, with bar seating, dining tables, banquettes and a generous courtyard for enjoying the Bondi weather. The intimate two-seater table that sits in a nook at the back of the dining area was de Simone’s way of utilising an awkward space in the base build.
The interiors feature a light and textured palette to match that of the dishes being served. de Simone used sustainable and recycled materials such as timber, stone, brass and linen, their natural colours and textures imbuing the space with softness and tactility. Terrazzo, speckled tiles and fern-green stone convey a natural, coastal feel, while the terracotta half pipes encasing the front of the kitchen counter reference the notion of earth to table, since dishes are made with locally sourced and seasonal produce. Using recycled materials also helped to reduce waste, and similarly, the walls are coated with a simple apricot and bone-coloured finish to avoid the need for additional materials.
Timber and rattan plantation-style furnishings maintain the fine balance between minimalism and texture that characterises Eden. A tropical plant print — appropriately of a Monstera Deliciosa or ‘fruit salad plant’ — on the banquette upholstery and abundant greenery throughout brings nature inside and depicts Eden’s culinary intentions. ‘The plantings obviously reference, almost literally, the eating of organic greens,’ de Simone explains. ‘In an age where we need to play serious catch-up in terms of cleaning up and protecting our environment, Eden is a celebration of ethical eating and sustainability.’
Text / Rebecca Gross
Images / Edward de Simone