Immersive DC comic book restaurant planned for Soho

Planning has been submitted for an immersive comic book restaurant based on the DC universe within the same building as American steakhouse restaurant Mash in London’s Piccadilly, which also seeks to revitalise the building’s 1930s art deco features.

The new restaurant will be rooted within the DC universe, drawing on characters including Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman.

The existing building, owned by Crown Estates, is the former Regents Palace Hotel in Piccadilly which is situated on a triangular site formed by Glasshouse, Brewer and Sherwood Streets. The Grade II listed building was opened in 1915 and was the largest Hotel in Europe at the time. In 1930s Oliver Bernard remodelled the restaurant and bars.

Mash is not thought to be closing to make way for the new restaurant, but developers have said the intention is to “demise some additional space surrounding the current restaurant unit at basement level 2 and 3 which is largely redundant and/or underused”.

“The proposal is to retain the current use as high end restaurant but to redecorate, reinstate lost features of the 1930s interior and make minor alterations to the access into the former Titanic Bar,” the planning application states.

Parts of the building will be transformed into a restaurant “rooted within the DC Multiverse,” if a planning application submitted to Westminster Council is approved, making way for a 317-cover restaurant.

A design and access statement states: “The proposed design continues the use of the space as a high-end restaurant. The restaurant will be rooted within the DC Multiverse, taking visitors on a culinary adventure through the many fictional Universes famous for their superhero residents such as Batman, Superman and Wonderwoman.

“The style and design of the DC Multiverse is heavily influenced by the Art Deco period with the style prominent within its publications and film and television work. The restaurant will not be a ‘theme park’ with literal sets and costumes from the franchise, but it has the intention to invite guests to experience the DC Universe without breaking the fourth wall- the imaginary wall that separates the audience from the performance.”

According to planning documents, the main dining room will be divided into five spaces that will include a lounge Bar, called Pennyworth’s, which will be inspired by the original Oliver Bernard Design for the Titanic Bar previously housed at the building during the 1930s, alongside the Iceberg Lounge.

These areas will be complemented by two dining areas – a main restaurant called Dichotomy Fine Dining and an immersive dining experience based on Arkham – the fictional psychiatric hospital most prominent in Batman stories.

A “high-end restaurateur” has apparently been identified by Crown Estates to execute this vision.

A decision is expected by 16 April.

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