SODA Architects Brew Up Nescafé Dolce Gusto’s First Shanghai Concept Store
When Nestlé approached SODA Architects with the idea of inaugurating a collection of concept stores for its Nescafé Dolce Gusto brand, lead designers Yuan Jiang and Chen Song knew they needed something a little more innovative than just a standard coffee shop on busy Huaihai Road. “We hoped to create a new commercial space experience that combines digital content with physical space,” says Jiang, who knows a bit about space experience from his time at Ateliers Jean Nouvel. “We went back to the coffee capsules and used them as the starting point.”
The team arranged 3,000 capsules to form modular stripes of color; an additional 1,000 white capsules conceal programmable LED lights that transform them into ersatz pixels. The result is a rainbow-bright hall of mirrors that looks far larger than its modest 430 square feet.
“We used full-height translucent glass to expand the interior space by reflection,” says Song, who learned about the power of glass at Pei Partnership Architects (Asia). “When the sun sets and the street is turning dark, virtual dynamic images replace common building materials on the shop’s façade, just like the scenery of future streets in “Blade Runner.” It’s quite a bright idea, indeed.
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