Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio

07_ Glessner Group

Architects: Rojkind Arquitectos / Michel + ESRAWE Studio / Hector Esrawe
Location: City,
Project team: Rojkind [Tere Levy, Agustín Pereyra, Raúl Araiza, Carlos Alberto Ríos, Isaac Smeke Jaber, Enrique F. de la Barrera] / ESRAWE [Ricardo Casas, Basia Pineda, Ian Castillo, Karianne Rygh, Alejandra Castelao, Jorge Bracho]
Program: Japanese Restaurant
Client: Dr. Katsumi Kumoto Kawasaki
Project Area: 629 sqm
Design year: 2008
Construction year: 2010
Images: © Glessner Group & ESRAWE Studio

02_ Glessner Group + Guido Torres 08_ ESRAWE Studio [reception area] 09_ ESRAWE Studio [reception area] 12_ ESRAWE Studio [bar]

Considered one of the best Japanese restaurants in Mexico City and due to its remarkable success, Tori-Tori is now moving to a bigger location in the same area of Polanco, Mexico City, where Architect Michel Rojkind and Industrial Designer Hector Esrawe teamed up to make it happen.

At the residential area in Polanco that has seen changes in its zoning, houses have been transformed to office spaces or restaurants. Sometimes things happen so unnoticeable, that just a small sign appears where a new space has been developed with a completely different program inside, while preserving its exterior.

site plan
site plan

Aware of this, Rojkind and Esrawe wanted to give enough strength to the new program that they proposed to transform the space inside out.

Taking advantage of the plot’s conditions, the parking space will be left where it is, to use the budget mainly for restructuring and renovating the house, stripping the residential interior and removing all familiar features to produce an entirely different environment.

‘We are being coherent with its culinary know-how and creating the accurate environment and situations for a gastronomical experience. The final result is achieved not only by working with the client but with his complete staff as well.’

13_ ESRAWE Studio [tea room]

Although the client’s requirements were oriented towards a Japanese interpretation, it was not literal, he wanted the place to have its own personal expression, contemporary and cosmopolitan, by enhancing its spatial existing conditions through different experiences, the new range of open spaces, its terraces, its sake bar and its own exclusive temple oriented to the highly demanding sushi lovers.

Maintaining a very intimate and subtle feel towards the first encounter with the exterior, once you enter you’ll find yourself in a terrace, where eating and drinking are embraced by natural vegetation. The building’s organic façade and landscape were carefully designed to become an extension of the restaurant creating a strong relationship between the inside and the outside.

The interior receives and follows the exterior with subtle contrasts. Each room has its own nature and shows a clear relationship with its function. The furniture was inspired and made for Tori Tori and developed with a direct orientation through each space. During more than eight months a complete collection of chairs and tables where created, for both exterior and interior use.

01_ Glessner Group + Guido Torres

‘We seek in the project a chance for the users to link with the different ambiances and choose their favorites. Each space’s materials, setup and characteristics towards the furniture generate a wide spectrum of options and sensations for its assiduous clients.’ I.D. Héctor Esrawe, ESRAWE studio

The Façade, which seems to emerge from the ground climbing up through the building, as if mimicking the natural ivy surrounding the retaining walls, is made up of two self-supporting layers of steel plates cut with a CNC machine and handcrafted to exact specifications.

‘At rojkind arquitectos we are very rigorous about experimenting with digital design as well as getting things built. That’s why we have specially focused on how to translate complex geometries into very simple and understandable drawings that benefit from local manufacturing, as is the case of working in Mexico City.

section 03
section 03

Our vast experience building over the past years has made us aware of the incredible local labor that would be very difficult to get in different countries. Depending on the geographical location of new commissions given to the office we do enough research to understand in which area we can benefit from local conditions and enhance the final result to make it unique.’ Michel Rojkind, rojkind arquitectos.

The facade’s pattern responds to the inside openings, filtering light, shadows, and views that will constantly invade the interior spaces. An atmosphere enriched by the spectrum of subtle changes.

06_ Glessner Group

Consultant Credits:

FACADE CONSULTANTS [3D STUDIES]_ Kokkugia [Roland Snooks, Robert Stuart-Smith]
CONSTRUCTION_ ZDA desarrollo + arquitectura [Yuri Zagorin]
LIGHTING DESIGN_ luz en arquitectura [Arq. Kai Diederichsen]
AUDIO & VIDEO PROJECT_ NTX New Technology Experience
LANDSCAPE DESIGN_ entorno taller de paisaje
STRUCTURAL ENGINEER_ Ing. Juan Felipe Heredia
M.E.P._ QUANTUM Design
INVITED ARTIST_ Photographer Guido Torres

Cite: Saieh, Nico. "Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio" 04 Oct 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 25 May 2015. <>
  • Sazuki Ducent Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio: Program: J..

  • HamLëT

    W O W!!!
    W O W!!!
    W O W!!!
    W O W!!!
    W O W!!!

    Rojkind Rules!!!

  • Anik1

    Reading: "Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio | ArchDaily" (

  • Adrian

    Ammmmm..not much to say , nice facades but…

  • Ana Sofia Garza

    RT @nicdesign: One of the coolest designs of a Jap restaurant designed by a Mexican firm? All I can say amazing > nice!

  • Dustin

    This project has some nice features but the mistakes seem to outway them.
    First of all, this project is in Mexico City, one of the biggest cities in the world, though the architects seem to think that they can just enclose the site with some big walls and all of a sudden all the pollution, noise and city will just go away. At no point do they seem to relate the building to a context or show the surroundings, they just make there little japanese world.
    Second, what is up with no bathrooms on the main floor? Is this not a restaurant? I am sure the customors will be thrilled to go up a flight of stairs everytime they need to use the facilities.
    Also… what is up with that green wall? there is no sunshine, sunshine.
    If you look closely at the plans you will find more question marks that make this project not much more than a pretty facade, and that is for the people who like the facade. for those who don’t well.. what a disaster.

  • archilocus

    I love very much how the door, edges, roof and different indoor functions are related so well to the facade pattern… Me, sarcastic ?
    3d and CNC do not solve projects, we’ve learnt this in first year.

  • Eduardo Flores

    RT @nicdesign One of the coolest designs of a Japanese restaurants designed by a Mexican firm? All I can say amaaazing.

  • cad

    The facade is a bird sanctuary.

  • ZIED

    The only thing i like is the facade`, ONLY, notjing els

  • oscar falcón lara

    Too much of the same Rojkind posse architecture, over the top to claim attention… Now I like the concepts here, seems more focused on the interior rather than the service side of things which in a sushi place count for more than half of the project, but it’s good they have their “style”, not fit for every project though, but good.

  • PB

    looks messy.

  • uili

    debemos sentir orgullo por un ex-alex syntek y la gente normal que pone en alto el nombre de la arquitectura mexicana?

  • ftl

    ke asco pobre rojkind

  • Randy Brown

    RT @moldingdesign: Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio: Architects: Rojkind Arquitectos..

  • zamutrosky

    This time I didnt like the work of Rojkind, best luck in the future. The façade looks nice, but… architecture is not just about façades.

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  • theChavacano

    Rojkind is all about facades, just facades nothing inside.

  • crazykingkong

    the facade does not encourage me … women stockings is a too obvious bad-remedy to “dress-up” architecture…


    Considered 1 of the best Japanese restaurants in Mexico City & due to its remarkable success #restaurant


    Considered 1 of the best Japanese restaurants in Mexico City & due to its remarkable success #restaurant

  • Hector Oz

    Reading: "Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio | ArchDaily"( )