Japanese restaurant chain Yo! Sushi has launched a new site in central London featuring a new design concept, cocktail bar and a new menu.
The 70-cover restaurant on Market Place, near Oxford Circus,is inspired by current trends from Tokyo featuring interiors with a red and black colour scheme and a heaven and hell theme.
Designed by DGA Architects, interiors take inspiration fromJapanese architect Toyo Ito and include tree-like branches forming an overheadcanopy which "brings the outside inside". The site also includes "high tech toilets", which are operated electronically and are self-flushing and cleaning.
Yo! Sushi's signature conveyor belt snakes around the entire restaurant, making it accessible from every seat, offering a range of 50 new dishes only available at the Market Place site.
Robin Rowland, chief executive of Yo! Sushi and a former Catey Group Restaurateur of the Year winner, told Caterer the new restaurant wasn't a flagship site but a test site for new concepts.
"We went to Tokyo to see what's happening in the Japanese restaurant scene and came back with arange of new design and menu ideas which we have introduced at this restaurant," he said. "We have no plans to roll out all of these new elements but will see which work and take individual ideas to new sites."
Rowland added that Yo! Sushi was on track to open 10 new outlets this year, with the next two sites set to open at Edinburgh airport, Milton Keynes and London's Festival Hall.
"Future expansion plans depend on us finding the right sites," Rowland added. "We're not in a numbers game but realistically we'd like to open between five and 10 sites a year."
Yo! Sushi currently operates 49 UK and 15 international restaurants.
By Kerstin Kühn
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