Summer House Story by Ricky Teja

Very few outlets can boast English singer and song writer Chris Martin not only partied at their café but loved the vibe so much that he ended up doing an impromptu gig. Restauranteur Ricky Teja, whose Summer House Café in New Delhi holds the distinction of hosting the iconic British rock band Coldplay's lead, shares how ideas gathered from across the world while travelling shaped his Summer House…

Every vacation of mine inspires the restauranteur in me. I have incorporated a lot of small details — interiors, menu design to actual dishes — in my bars and cafes that I have seen while travelling. In fact travel played a key role in shaping Summer House Café. 
The Swedish 'Summer House' that inspired Ricky's Cafe

Sweden Inspired Cafe

My girlfriend is from Sweden. First time I went there was four years ago. She took me to her family holiday home in Oland, one of the largest islands in south of Sweden. Her family goes there every year to spend their summers. Since they were doing it for last 20 years, they had stopped calling it a holiday home (Which honestly anyways sounded so boring) and fondly called it their ‘Summer House’. I stayed there for a week with her family. The house is made of white painted wood planks with an A-roof, and have a cute colourful garden in front. We used to have barbecue every afternoon in the garden while listening to nice music and sipping beer. That was one of the best vacation I ever had.

"After my vacation at the Swedish 'Summer House' of my girlfriend, I started working on ideas to design a similar space where people can enjoy and a have good time with family and friends."

When I came back, I started working on the idea of something similar in design and vibe. I wanted to open a place where  you should feel you are having a good time with your friends and family. And I wanted to call it Summer House. That’s what I eventually named the café as – Summer House Café.

Southeast Asian Bar

Three years ago when I was opening the Café, I wanted a very chilled, casual and a shack like vibe on the rooftop. So, I installed a actual mini van on the roof top and made it in to a bar. I saw this concept a lot while travelling to Southeast Asia and felt why not give it a go. It worked! 
Rock Bar at Bali, Indonesia

Global Binge

I have quite a few memorable food and beverage experiences while travelling. Some that instantly come to mind are enjoying tapas at Hole in the Wall Jazz Bar in the old town of Barcelona, feasting on fresh ice water shrimps on a classic smorebrod in Copenhagen, Denmark and sipping some of the best cocktails at the famous Rock Bar in Bali. The bar has probably one of the best views and is difficult to forget.

Rick holidaying in Croatia with friends

Hvar High

My last vacation was in July to Croatia. I stayed for two days in Split which is one of the main cities. From there on I went ahead to enjoy island life during my 4 days stay in Brac island and a week in Hvar island. I took an Aerofloat flight from IGI airport New Delhi to Split with a stop over in Moscow. The total time with the stopover was 17 hours. It was definitely worth the long travel time. Especially Hvar island with its perfect blend of beautiful nature, never ending beaches and vibrant night life. We found several nice restaurants and bars in Hvar town, however one of the favourites was definitely Kalavanda Music Bar. They have perfectly crafted cocktails and fantastic service. I would really recommend it to anyone travelling to Hvar.

Ricky Teja is a New Delhi based restauranteur who runs extremely popular and hip Summer House Cafe. He narrated his travel tales to Nausheen Tareen
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