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The Bernstein, Bielefeld.

"Appealing to the senses of the guests."

Fine dining, bistro and bar rendezvous with each other at The Bernstein in Bielefeld. With the remodeling of the restaurant, interior designer Marieme Diene and architect Andreas Georg Hanke have created a spectacular highlight perched above the rooftops of the city. In an interview, they shed light on how the refurbishment was carried out, what role the illumination with QualityFlex played in the new concept and what materials they used.  

What was the special challenge for you in renovating The Bernstein?

The challenge was to revive a restaurant that has been around for 17 years. We then spent many hours working closely with the client to develop the concept.

“Both regulars and new customers should be able to build their own connection with the new Bernstein.”

Which elements of your concept were of particular importance to you? 

We wanted to create a uniform concept and reflect the client's philosophy in the interior design. That's why we carefully selected each building material and designed some pieces of furniture especially for The Bernstein. We felt it was important that different guests could perceive the restaurant in different ways. Both regulars and new customers should be able to build their own connection with the new Bernstein. 

Different zones place different demands on the illumination fixture. How do you ensure that guests and staff feel equally comfortable? 

We prefer to work with two stages of a lighting concept: Illumination fixtures to safeguard traffic routes, illuminate work surfaces and tables. With atmospheric lighting, on the other hand, we appeal to the senses of the guests and create a congenial atmosphere. 

Which requirements do you have in terms of light color, dimmability and spatial effect?

It was important to us that The Bernstein finds its underlying mood in the range between 2000 and 2700 Kelvin color temperature. That is, between candlelight and warm white. In this regard, it is essential that the luminaires can be dimmed with dim2warm.

The light lines are certainly a highlight. How was the concept for the ceiling luminaires developed? 

We wanted to make the ceiling girders disappear and create a second level that shines as a new striking landmark above the roofs of Bielefeld. The light lines designed with QualityFlex are, to be more precise, rhombuses, which we let appear again and again in The Bernstein as a design element. From the floor in the bistro area to the lift core to the logo. The light lines should be controllable and dimmable, so that the warm light of the luminaires shines significantly in all directions of the restaurant.

What do you pay attention to when staging food and drinks? 

It is important that the tables are optimally illuminated. As a guest, there is nothing more annoying than not being able to figure out what food you are eating or worse yet, are eating under the foul color tones. That is why we pay attention here to the use of warm light with natural color rendering properties. 


"As a guest, there is nothing more annoying than not being able to figure out what food you are eating."


How did you manage to convey the quintessence of the restaurant?

Materials such as walnut, oak, granite, petroleum blue lacquered woods and nickel silver form the basis of the atmospheric design. These natural materials are precisely illuminated by the lighting design. We have deliberately used materials with reflective surfaces so that the lighting elements can always be perceived differently. The granite tabletops in the bistro, for example, reflect the light lines of the ceiling grid. This creates particularly beautiful lighting effects. We have also positioned the large glass luminaires so that they reflect the light lines in a curved manner. The symbiosis of light and material appeals to the guest in a subtle way and it creates an emotional connection with the restaurant.

What makes The Bernstein a special restaurant?

The Bernstein is a bistro, restaurant and bar combined in one. Everyone is welcome here and can enjoy great food at fair prices. It is a space where the atmosphere changes throughout the day and can be adapted to the mood and needs of the guests. The new design of The Bernstein chronicles the optimistic outlook of the 1950s, with a dash of 1920s bar design. The guests should be able to fully indulge themselves in this special ambience. All details of this planning are in keeping with the themes of the design: The classic bar that might as well be home to Marylin Monroe, the fine dining and the bistro area blend past and present into each other. 

"The symbiosis of light and material appeals to the guest in a subtle way and it creates an emotional connection with the restaurant".


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