Monday, May 8, 2017

The Madero Café, Guatemala City

Taller KEN, an architecture firm based in New York and Guatemala created a dream-like tropical oasis of a restaurant. Madero Café is a plain burgundy cube on the outside, albeit studded with cars that appear as if they crashed and penetrated part way into the building. But it is the inside that is kaleidoscopic.

The architecture firm says:
"This project mines local patterns, materials and textures and collects them to make a fresh tropical atmosphere.

The café is open-air, with no glass, to connect the project to the pedestrian walkways. The exterior consists only of custom operable folding shutters comprised of steel panels inter-woven with dowels. It ‘skins’ the existing commercial center’s facade to create a greater impression of a unified whole when seen from all 3 free sides.

The floor is a custom-made concrete tile with a ‘random’ colorful pattern that serves as an orienting guide for people to circulate around the service core of kitchen and bathrooms and explore to find unique surprises and moments to experience the project differently each visit."

The café is sustainably minded too--the space is lit by sawtooth skylights and rain water is collected in the gigantic blue barrels you see against one wall to maintain all of the tropical planting.

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