Lighting for SLA Salad Bar’s Latest Location in Rotterdam

Lighting for SLA Salad Bar’s Latest Location in Rotterdam

About a year ago, SLA salad bar opened its doors in Rotterdam. Interior design firm Standard Studio wanted to create an interior that reflected the pure and healthy identity of SLA alongside the vibrant, industrial character of Rotterdam. Standard Studio approached Blom & Blom to craft bespoke lighting fixtures as the final touch in delivering a distinctive ambiance for SLA Rotterdam. Besides the selected fixtures from our Heritage Collection chosen for SLA Rotterdam, we also designed a bespoke lighting installation as the central element of the interior above the salad counter and focal point of the restaurant. In this post, we will share more about our working process and how this lighting installation challenge took shape.

How did we approach the SLA lighting concept?

We started off with a team brainstorm in search of a design that would bring together both the identity of SLA and the bold face of Rotterdam. We knew that Standard Studio had approached us to develop the new location’s lighting concept because we are a local company, with an authentic handcrafted style using pure, raw and industrial materials that are unique to Blom & Blom. We built our SLA concept around the use of sustainable and organic materials that promote the core principles of SLA and highlight the character of Rotterdam as a harbor city. 

With all that in mind, we started off with a few sketches featuring our Fox lamps from our Editions Collection with their rough hewn wood composition - a perfect match for SLA’s new location in Rotterdam. In our proposal, we had connected the Fox lamps with each other, suspended above the SLA salad bar counter. 

First Sketch

Feedback Session

In our feedback session with Standard Studio, we confirmed the use of discarded wood, but then on an even bigger scale. We wanted to make a bold statement emphasizing the height and grandeur of SLA’s new home and the City of Rotterdam. Back in our workshop, we started working on new ideas. We flexed our Rotterdam muscles with three versions of massive wooden beams majestically suspended from the ceiling. Below you can find our 3D renderings of this idea. 

3D Render Front View

3D Render Side View

Finalizing the idea and getting to work

The overhead beams were created from discarded pilings that had been in the water for over 40 years and had been originally used to support the docks in the Rotterdam harbor. The look we were going for was to expose the beautiful inner structure of the original tree’s growth rings by sanding both ends of the beams to their finest polished grain in contrast with the rough and ready texture of their sides. As the wood had spent decades in the water, it had slowly petrified. Because of that, the sanding of the ends required a lot of work and patience. Also, milling the channel for a slim LED light strip that would run the length of the robust beams was a true challenge in making it straight and tight in wood that had almost turned into stone.

Work in progress. Working on the LED channels in the beams.

The impressive beams were to be suspended by thin steel cables above the salad counter and focal point of the restaurant. As the beams would be suspended at a slant, it was a brain teaser calculating how much weight there would be on the hooks for beams that weigh around 100 kilos each. The end result is amazing as the beams appear to be floating in space.

Custom-made Projects

Curious to see more photos of the project, click here. Or do you have a project in mind? We would love to brainstorm with you and see if we can bring it together to the next level. Please feel free to get in touch with us: