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A ‘New Asian’ Restaurant and Anime-Themed Bar, and Two Other Downtown Developments to Know

Get Miami and Las Vegas vibes in the Motor City

A rendering for the interior of a bar with Asian aesthetic in downtown Detroit, Michigan. Elia Group Iconic Collection
Serena Maria Daniels is the editor for Eater Detroit.

Downtown will welcome a spat of new eating and drinking destinations in the coming months, including a “New Asian” restaurant, an accompanying anime-themed cocktail bar, and the reactivation of a long-vacant building.

The Experience Zuzu restaurant and Upstairs Bar are being developed at 511 Woodward by the Elia Group, and are to be operated by the firm’s hospitality arm, the Iconic Collection, which also runs Parc at Campus Martius, the historic dive Anchor Bar, 220 Merrill in Birmingham, among others. The dining destination will feature sushi, appetizers, and other dishes prepared in a wok, charcoal oven, and wood-fired grill. Outside, an expansive outdoor patio area that overlooks Woodward. Just above, the Upstairs Bar will offer guests cocktails and small plates in a space described in a media release as “a techno fantasy brought to life, melding Detroit’s distinctive sound with Japan’s colorful anime aesthetic.” Both establishments are expected to open in July and could expand to other regions of the country in the future, according to the news release.

New food in the District

A new restaurant specializing in Mediterranean, Chaldean, and Middle Eastern food has opened in the so-called District Detroit, the entertainment zone developed by Olympia Development of Michigan. Sahara Restaurant & Grill’s opened to the public on Friday, April 14 at 77 West Columbia Street — situated in the pedestrian-friendly area between the Fox Theatre and Little Caesars Global Headquarters. Sahara also has three other Michigan locations.

New life for old building

A long vacant building just south of Grand Circus Park will soon see new life as a restaurant. Urbanize reports that a Bedrock-owned building at 1550 Woodward will be rehabbed into an as-of-yet named restaurant. Kraemer Design Group and McIntosh Poris Associates are expected to lead the project. As part of the rebuild, a section of the structure will be demolished and a new rooftop terrace will be installed.