Occupying a 30sqm corner of a restored historic building, Basic Coffee is a key tenant of a co-working hub with a goal to activate the newly gentrified commercial zone of XianYuKou, Beijing, through providing quality artisan coffee beverages to its neighbours and visiting tourists.
▼咖啡店外观，exterior view ©刘宇杰
OFFICE AIO 的设计初衷与品牌定位达成了共识：“好咖啡即是常态”，尝试转变人们对于咖啡馆体验的传统印象，从咖啡的“制作”升华到“享用”。OFFICE AIO 通过空间设计打破现有的经营与体验模式：一个不再以炫耀精巧机器与咖啡师的表演，而是以捕捉并组合无形和微妙的整体“感官体验”。
Resonating with the brand’s belief in: “good coffee is norm”, Office AIO challenges to spin the impression of a generic cafe from the conventional “making of” to “the enjoyment of” coffee. This is achieved by a spatial arrangement that inverts the relationship from one that features the fanciest of tools and showmanship of baristas, to one aimed at capturing something that is much less tangible – one’s senses.
▼平面图，plan ©OFFICE AIO
An unconventional spatial layout for an unexpected cafe experience
The design focuses on establishing a series of “framed views” into the café, by orchestrating a play of light and obscurity. This sense of mystery and curiosity is made possible by a concentric spatial organisation, originated from a concealed coffee-making area, wrapped by a ‘veiled’ entry gallery and a curved seating area on the outermost layer.
▼咖啡调制区域被曲线的帷幕包围，a concealed coffee-making area wrapped by a ‘veiled’ entry gallery ©刘宇杰
The journey begins with entering into a thin slice of volume enveloped by a suspended aluminium perforated screen above the bar bench, revealing a partial view of the seating area.
▼挑高的条形空间， a thin slice of volume ©刘宇杰
▼冲孔铝板屏风展露出部分座位区， a suspended aluminum perforated screen reveals a partial view of the seating area ©刘宇杰
Coffee order takes place at the junction between entry gallery and the large window facing the street, where the barista is strategically positioned to serve both dine-in and takeaway customers, sculpted as an exaggerated one-point perspective scene. A fissure is created adjacent to an illuminating wall, dramatising the display of pour-over coffee preparation.
▼临街窗户交汇处，the large window facing the street ©刘宇杰
▼在灯膜墙前拿取咖啡， in front of the illuminating wall ©刘宇杰
Re-discover coffee drinking through orchestrated framed view
空间里，OFFICE AIO 使用了柔和的品牌颜色、简约却又意蕴悠长的设计语言以及有趣且意想不到的空间旅程以打造独特的空间体验。这些元素引导客人关注着种种精心安排的画面，调动着他们的感官（声觉、嗅觉、味觉）全方位地享受咖啡。
To craft the passage, Office AIO designs with pastel brand colour, the minimal but profound design language as well as a playful and unexpected spatial journey. These elements yield an experience that allows the patrons to experience the space through observing a series of orchestrated movements, experience coffee-drinking through focusing their senses on sounds, olfaction and flavours.
▼咖啡产品展示区，product display space ©刘宇杰
Like a live ad, these “framed views” expose different motions, “performed” by all parties in the cafe. The suggestiveness in partially concealed acts of indulging in coffee, muffled chatters, and sound and smells of coffee-making, arouse one’s curiosity and appetite. As a result, these subtly evocative stimulus underscore Basic Coffee’s value, coffee made to savour as it is and enjoyed intimately in a delicate 30sqm of space.
▼沐浴在阳光里的空间，space bathed in the sunlight ©刘宇杰
Project name: Basic Coffee
Client: Monica Wang | Basic Coffee
Designed by: Tim Kwan / OFFICE AIO
Location: Xian Yu Kou, Beijing, China
Graphic Designer:Cheese & Crackers
Construction:Wan Hong GANG
Contact: Isabelle Sun firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo credit: Yujie Liu