Commercial area in the VISON themed on Japanese cuisine

2021@Taki, Mie Prefecture

WA-VISON is a restaurant and shop area themed on Washoku, or Japanese cuisine, consisting of a series of three plazas named Kuramae, Umami, and Shokusai. We believed in the experience value of being able to shop and enjoy food in nature. Therefore, rather than a shopping mall model where people can’t feel the nature once inside the building, we focused on creating a shopping district-like design where restaurants and shop line the street like houses. We adopted a simple composition that allows people to understand where they are while also offering the excitement of maze-like features. Each plaza is characterized by a different architectural type so as to help people intuitively recognize the area.

Bird’s eye view

Kuramae Plaza

Kuramae Plaza focuses on fermented seasonings. Four buildings, one each for vinegar, mirin (sweet cooking rice wine), soy sauce, and miso (fermented bean paste), as well as separate buildings for konbu (kelp) and katsuobushi (dried bonito), comprise an open plaza against a street. We focused on creating a view with the mountains in the backdrop, planned integrally with the opposite side of the street. The graphical gate-like design is inspired by old-style Japanese storehouses. Vinegar and mirin sold here are actually manufactured in these buildings.

From the right: vinegar, mirin, soy sauce, and miso
Two buildings on the left are konbu and katsuobushi

Umami Plaza

The buildings that make up the Umami Plaza are designed and structured to be part of the intermediate zone. Their eaves and decorative diagonal braces characterize the area. The boundary between the inside and outside is blurred by the layered structure created by the glass, noren (a short split curtain hung at the entrance of a room), and decorative diagonal braces, with which we aimed to produce a multi-layered spatial composition where the outdoor and indoor peek through.

Looking in the direction of the Shokusai Plaza from the Umami Plaza
Promoting active use of the space under the eaves

Shokusai Plaza

Shokusai Plaza is envisaged to hold events such as mochi pounding (rice cake making) and bon-odori dances. The dining hall, which is the face of the plaza, does not connect the inside and outside, but instead is a park-like space that brings outside elements inside.

Exterior view of the dining hall
Interior view of the dining hall
Exterior view of sake brewery
Looking at the hotel from the Shokusai Plaza