Sunday, May 29, 2022

ATE AT DESIGN empowering local artists one meal at a time

Batswana are a people not famously known for their celebration and appreciation of the arts. As a result, the industry remains one of the slowest growing and low-rewarding in our country. Ate at Design, a restaurant in Setlhoa is out to change that narrative one meal at a time.

Located in Setlhoa’s The Design Quarter mall, Ate at Design which was opened in 2020 during the pandemic is a restaurant that prides itself in delicious cuisine and its celebration and appreciation of our local artisans.

The restaurant’s interior gives off an art gallery vibe, with colourful walls that shelter huge canvases which display paintings and drawings made by local artists.

The restaurant manager Moussa Mbangiwa said that this gallery-themed design was planned and curated by the restaurant’s owner Ronald Chiruma who is a massive arts enthusiast and also big on supporting local artists.

He informed that they work closely with local artists to use the space as an art gallery that allows them to see their works to customers who come in for a meal.

“We first approached one artist to work with him and from there he brought on others and the relationship with artists developed.” He said.

He pointed out that since they started this initiative, it has worked well for the artists as many of them have sold artworks through the initiative.

Apart from creative artists, Mbangiwa also highlighted that they work with performing artists as well in order to grow their brands by giving them exposure.

He said: “besides the art gallery, sometimes we set up the restaurant for performing artists to give live performances to our guests. Besides providing entertainment, it gives them a platform to sell themselves to our customers who end up buying their music or art.

Mbangiwa said since its inception the business’ success has been impressive. He attributed most of the success to the support they have gotten from Batswana who are their primary clientele.

The unique venue which is a café, bar and kitchen setup creates an aesthetically pleasing ambience which provides the perfect setting for excellent service and top tier hospitality.

It has a mellow atmosphere where you can eat great food, relax in your own comfort or with friends and family as well as have business meetings and get work done.

Mbangiwa informed that their extensive menu is a fuse of cuisines from different parts of the world such as Italian and Tswana cuisine. This he says caters for the diverse clientele they have and also opens up a new world of food to Batswana.

He highlighted that although the location is a bit out of reach for many, it is definitely worth the trip as the service and food is unmatched.

Mbangiwa says the restaurant is very keen on supporting local artists by giving them a platform to showcase their work. He further informed that they intend to continue with their strategy with the intent of promoting and growing our local arts industry.

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