Dubai, October 2022 | A brand new homegrown bar/café concept has opened its doors at ICD Brookfield Place. Lulu & The Beanstalk is the result of two filmmakers – designing a cosy dreamy spot that gives guests their own little world to escape into. Curated, bespoke and memorable with high quality coffee, craft cocktails, comforting small dishes and hearty sharing platters all served alongside a beautiful book shop with whimsical interiors and a soundtrack of tailored tracks. Sink into a seat, with a drink in hand, and get lost in the sensory story of Mama Lulu.
Wafa Tajdin and Amirah Tajdin are the two sisters behind the brand who share a deep love for storytelling. A love that was passed down to them by their grandmother, Lulu, who always encouraged the joy of getting lost in one’s imagination. An additional chapter in their filmmaking careers (Wafa is a producer and Amirah a director) and looking to diversify what stories can look like, the sisters came together to create their very own love letter to Lulu. When they’re not on set, you’ll find the sisters in the space welcoming their guests into Lulu’s world.
Mama Lulu was a magical woman from the island of Lamu, Kenya. A force of nature who could weave a tale taller than a beanstalk and transport listeners into the depths of imagination and fun they never thought possible. She loved to chat dreams as she cooked, hosted and entertained people from across the neighbourhood and community in her humble home. A widowed mother of five, she raised more than just her children, she raised hope in the lives of so many people who got to call her a friend. But most importantly, Lulu was Wafa and Amirah’s grandmother. She taught them how to love, how to nurture human spirit and how to revel in the joy of life against all odds.
An excellent cook and host, Mama Lulu was a master in the art of bringing people together – a sentiment that forms the identity at Lulu & The Beanstalk, where guests are encouraged to hang out and catch a vibe. Whether that’s enjoying a meal, grabbing a coffee or staying late into the night with a cocktail and great music, with playlists carefully curated and selected by Amirah who is a DJ herself. From Thursday and into the weekend guests can come to hear local and international DJs play sets in store and spin a killer vibe.
Chef Chris took cues from Mama Lulu’s own recipe book, reflecting her travels and cultural cross over. Cosy, elevated comfort food anchors the menu with hot and cold small plates and sharing platters being dished up to the table. The bar offering is niche and features a curation of boutique blends, small batch organic grapes, and artisanal hops with signature cocktails that are twists on the classics.
An ode to Mama Lulu’s excellent storytelling skills, the sisters wanted guests to experience the journey of getting lost in wild worlds through the curated selection of art, design, photography and poetry books available for sale. As well as retail books, the floor to ceiling bookcase homes over 1,000 rare books that customers can browse through in store, with some of the books in the collection dating back to 1857.
Designed by Stockholm based architect and interior designer Jenny Askenfors at BOFINK, the space is a cosy explosion of colour and whimsy whilst still being rooted in the archives of memories from Mama Lulu’s house. Every piece of furniture evokes a sense of play and comfort. High design was at the core of the furniture selection and no detail was left unfinished. Some of the most iconic pieces in the space include the Verner Panton Cloverleaf, a dreamy de Sede DS 600, a recycled Meltingpot by Amsterdam design studio Kooij and anchoring the space is a custom handcrafted chandelier from South African artist Adam Hoets. These are just a few of the many pieces that create this little dreamlike escape.
Lulu & The Beanstalk seamlessly blends books, coffee, elevated comfort food and craft drinks into one space that celebrates aesthetic, creativity, stories and the spirit of the beloved Mama Lulu.