An immersive experience

24.07.2017 | by Wilkhahn Germany

An immersive experience: the Ultraviolet in Shanghai is more than just a restaurant. To say that it offers a dining experience would be something of an understatement. When guests book a dinner in the “world’s most innovative restaurant”, as it was recently called by the British Telegraph broadsheet, they embark on a journey to a surreal place. It starts in a van with tinted windows and finishes after the 20th course of highly individual new dishes created by top French chef Paul Pairet every evening.

Wilkhahn’s ON task chairs make guests at the Michelin-starred Ultraviolet restaurant forget they are sitting down at all. Photo: Scott Wright, Limelight Studio

The names of the set menus are just as minimalistic as the dining space itself: UVA, UVB, UVC – ultraviolet rays of different length. The rays might be invisible, but their impact on terrestrial life is something we can’t do without. And this is exactly where Ultraviolet’s concept starts: four walls, a table, ten armchairs and Wilkhahn’s ON task chair – but the room only comes to life once the light is switched on. The ten hand-picked guests enter a specially composed, multimedia and sensory setting that conjures up different atmospheres to match the dishes to perfection. Guests can enjoy oysters and caviar surrounded by a maritime canvas to the cry of seagulls and with a salty sea breeze wafting through the room. A fish-rice-fennel dish served in picnic-like metal tableware appears surrounded by a bucolic meadow with birds twittering and the fragrance of freshly cut hay reaching diners’ nostrils. And while gazing at a breath-taking alpine panorama, guests shiver while savouring probiotic yoghurt ice cream accompanied by orange blossoms.

A new world every day: one of the 20 courses in the Ultraviolet, China’s best restaurant, Photo: Scott Wright, Limelight Studio

Ultraviolet chef Paul Pairet’s cuisine is a case of immersive dining, his settings are excursions through micro- and macrocosmic worlds that don’t imitate but superelevate nature. The fact that he chose Wilkhahn’s three-dimensional ON office task chair as seating is only surprising for a split second: because what other chair allows such a natural range of movements and provides such good support at the same time? Just as the room, table and technology take second place behind the actual Ultraviolet experience, ON’s understated design and its patented Trimension® technology also disappears into the guest’s subconscious perception.
Shanghai’s Ultraviolet has garnered numerous accolades since its opening in 2012: it gained its second Michelin star in 2017, is considered the “best restaurant in China” (Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants) and it’s also in the top 50 of the world’s best restaurants (The World’s 50 Best Restaurants).

He turns dining into a multidimensional experience: top chef Paul Pairet, was awarded his second Michelin star in 2017. Photo: Scott Wright, Limelight Studio

Ultraviolet’s website:

The Daily Telegraph’s article about Ultraviolet:

Further information about the ON office task chair (design: wiege)

Multimedia and sensory experience: Shanghai’s top restaurant Ultraviolet, fitted out with Wilkhahn’s ON task chairs. Photo: Scott Wright, Limelight Studio

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