Pranee Laurillard, co-owner of Thai restaurant brand the Giggling Squid, plays a huge role in the build and interior design of each restaurant she opens. “I work fairly organically and tend to work with the building and what I’m enjoying at the time, whilst innately knowing what’s right for the brand,” she said.
“In Farnham, I loved the building from the start; it’s lovely and old with wooden beams and red brick walls so plenty of texture. I wanted to retain these features as much as possible. One of the first things I discovered was a little old room that had been hidden, which is now our semi-private dining space. We uncovered it and added reclaimed chandeliers to add a hint of glamour whilst also creating a nice contrast to the rustic red brick and old beams. The room now has a long waiting list.”
She added that for their Wokingham branch, she wanted to bring a softer, more natural feel to space so acquired some old garden gates from a reclamation yard nearby, and combined them with artificial foliage interspersed with typically Thai materials like bamboo baskets. “I’m lucky enough to have a very talented Thai lady who makes me bespoke clay orchids. They look so real and beautiful, and have crept into a lot of our Giggling Squid restaurants.”
“With regards to design trends, the British have a natural love of nature, which I think lends itself to restaurant themes and concepts – there’s something very nice about bringing the outdoors in. This is certainly becoming more prevalent in our dynamic restaurant industry but I think there are still ways to approachGiggling Squid | gigglingsquid.com