A new Japanese steakhouse has opened in Novi.
Genji Japanese Steakhouse, located at 27155 S. Karevich Drive across from Twelve Oaks Mall, had its soft opening two weeks ago and will celebrate its grand opening on Friday.
The restaurant is owned by the Pi family, who have six other restaurants in Michigan—each one different than the other.
Tony Pi said the family is happy to open a restaurant in Novi.
"Novi just had so many people and a lot of people coming in from other areas, but many people were having to go out to eat in Ann Arbor or Royal Oak to get that city feel," Pi said.
Genji will also serve as a showroom for the Pi family, and the restaurant has a commissary in the back that will be used for catering in the future.
The Dining Experience
Genji offers Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and other types of dishes. Pi said the chef likes to take a familiar dish to the next level, like Genji's spin on beef and broccoli using filet mignon.
Pi says the staff aims to give customers a two-hour dining experience, unless they bring their children and wish to have a quicker meal.
Patrons have their choice of several different dining areas when they come in.
They can choose to sit at the bar, which seats 38 and has a baby grand piano for live music. Or they can choose to sit at the sushi bar to watch their meal being prepared before them.
The remainder of the restaurant seats 400 and has several different areas based on your dining type.
The main dining area has a typical set-up for private dining. Off to the sides of the main area are hibachi stations, and screens can be put down between each one to give some privacy. Pi said these areas work well for business gatherings.
In the back of the restaurant is a large hibachi station for lively parties. The seats face a wall with 15 TV screens, which can be used to show decorative visuals or live sports games.
The restaurant also has an outdoor patio for the warmer months.
Natural & Fun Decor
The Pi family brought in Ron and Roman Architects of Birmingham to design the restaurant.
Pi said they used natural elements such as stone and slate throughout the restaurant. Several live plants, including bonsai trees, are sprinkled throughout the main dining area.
"It has a high-end atmosphere without the stuffiness," Pi said.
The restaurant has several statement pieces, such as the chandelier near the front door, which is in the shape of a cherry blossom branch. And hanging from the ceiling above the bar are two large wooden chopsticks holding a grain of rice.
There is also a mix of pop art in the decor, such as the graphic designs on the screens that separate some of the tables.
Pi said the restaurant has seen a lot of business so far and has created 130 jobs.
After its grand opening, the restaurant has planned three charity days, in which 100 percent of sales will go to local organizations such as United Way and Big Brothers Big Sisters.
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