First Italian themed Restaurant in Vanuatu

Mr Yamamoto standing with a view of his artwork (wall carving and painting)

Fern Napwatt

The Melanesian Hotel aims to leave customers in awe with its newest Italian restaurant.

The Melanesian Hotel General Manager, Mr Hiro Osuka said he wants to give a new experience to customers by changing the area that used to be a conference room into a new restaurant.

“This room used to be a another conference room at the hotel, but i have decided to change it into an Italian diner and so i want it to be ‘Italian’ thus we searched on the internet for the right person to do the job,” he said.

And that one person was Japanese artist, Mr Yamamoto, a quiet,outgoing and very hardworking person who has perfected his trait for the past nine years.

“Before practicing this art, i used to paint then i got bored and i decided to venture into something creative, exciting and different so i started the art of carving on walls and painting on walls to make it look like something else out of a plain white wall depending on what the theme is,” he said.

“For this room, the owner (Mr Osuka) wants an Italian restaurant with an Italian touch on the exterior and interior part of the building so i was a given a month period to get the job done, so its about finish and so far i have given a good impression of the work i did.”

Mr Yamamoto said that this his first job overseas and he came to Vanuatu with his family and Mr Kojima, another artist who has helped him finished the job.

“I used to do jobs around famous parks in Japan and have been to China but this is my first appointment away from Japan doing what i love for people to enjoy, this type of art is not famous in places in Europe but its famous in USA,” he said.

“This conference room has gone through a complete makeover and will now be a place where after it’s complete, it will feel like you are in actual restaurant in Italy, it’s authentic and pretty exciting to hear what people will say about it when it opens.”

Mr Yamamoto’s work on the new diner will not be possible without a foundation, so Franconieri and Son Construction did set the base from the arch on the walls to the rooftop.

“We did everything using local materials, purchased locally except for the lighting but Mr Yamamoto’s last touch to the whole building is extraordinary and impressive, people will like what they see,” Mr Franconieri Franck said.

“We are now working on the roof and will get all work done before the opening.”

From the carving bricks and sculptures on the walls, door and window frames, in the kitchen and the rest rooms, Mr Osuka can’t wait to open this new diner to the public come October.

“We will announce the exact date when it will be open through the media but everyone is welcome to come, dine and enjoy our authentic Italian restaurant with the best chef in town,” he said.

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