Venini lights up Saigon

Petra Ruta



17 FEB 2018
You pass through the main entrance, a grille made of glass and iron with a luminous red sign overhead, and enter Saigon: the Vietnamese restaurant in Milan that recalls the retro Asian atmosphere of the early 20th century, enhanced by evocative lighting designed by Venini

As you enter the new Saigon restaurant, it feels as though you have just walked through thick monsoon air, past gray houses and sky. You are catapulted into the French colonies of South East Asia in this chic Vietnamese restaurant in Milan, housed in a former industrial warehouse in Via Archimede 53.
Trendy restaurant king Luca Guelfi came up with the idea, inventing an authentic experiential journey for the eyes and palate by reviving the enchanted atmosphere that evokes the novels of Marguerite Duras. It is a cultured stylistic mix that abounds with allusions, while being simultaneously contemporary and glamorous. Extraordinary attention to aesthetic details is combined with exotic flavors and meticulous gastronomic research.
High ceilings, marble, boiserie and inlaid flooring form the background for the music bar, which offers exclusive cocktails. Indochina’s distinctive charm is expressed by straw chairs and stools covered with red honeycomb fabric (it took 3 months to find the right one), original ‘20s French floral wallpaper used to decorate the bathroom, ceiling fans imported from India and lush Kentia and banana leaves from Malaysia.
The atmosphere is accentuated above all by the lamps designed by Venini, three icons from the Art Light collection that reveal the extraordinary manufacturing skills of the glassworks founded in Murano in 1921. Designed in 1960, but inspired by the ‘20s, Triedri consists of elements that are individually handmade and wrapped in a hemisphere, striking decorations that transmit a full, round light beam. The Anni Trenta wall lamps renew an old tradition: the designs are formed using the ancient glass-blowing technique and the milky surfaces demonstrate the company’s ability to work with Lattimo and Pagliesco shades, which give glass an intense, bright, almost lacquered effect. Finally, Belboi, a table lamp designed in 1985 made of blown glass with crystal decoration, is still a perfect marriage between tradition and technical research.
An authentic style journey.