International design accolade for road trip diner

A project delivered by design and architect firm Prosper was announced the winner of the ‘Fast/Casual’ category at the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards during a ceremony in London this week.

Nelson’s Diner, a 1950s-themed restaurant in Newbury, Berkshire, was selected from eight finalists for its design excellence.

Now in its ninth year, the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards is a globally recognised competition dedicated to the design of food and beverage spaces. It attracts the world’s top designers, hospitality operators and judges from the UK and internationally. The 2016/2017 shortlist includes 265 projects across 33 categories from the world’s leading architects, interior designers, lighting designers and restaurant and bar operators. Judges have included architects Zaha Hadid and Foster & Partners, chef Gordon Ramsey and designer Alberto Alessi.

Opened in 2016, Nelson’s Diner is an independent restaurant owned by Shelly and Simon Francis. Set within a shopping centre, the design brings the outdoors inside and features a pink Chevrolet car, a drive-in cinema and an American ‘Airstream’ style camper van. Bright, rustic, neon signage and chequerboard tiling are also used throughout the space to create a true vintage feel.

Owner Shelly said:

“I wanted to create a food and beverage venue that genuinely captured the spirit of a 1950s American road trip and made customers feel they had visited an authentic diner from that era. Prosper successfully interpreted my vision and the ideas they shared with us on paper were brilliantly executed across the restaurant’s interior and graphics. Nelson’s is a labour of love and we’re thrilled the judges recognise the hard work we’ve put into delivering a distinctive and memorable dining experience. The team is excited to be sharing the same awards platform as some of the UK’s most reputable and stylish restaurants.”

Robert Rosser, Creative Director at Prosper added:

“Nelson’s is a project we’re particularly proud to have been involved in. It was a challenge to create an intimate atmospheric feel due to the size of the overall space, but the team definitely brought Shelly’s vision to life. The enjoyment the team got from bringing the concept to life is evident in the end result. This award just goes to show that independent food venues with smaller budgets can create the same style and flair as large, international chains.”