Shan Cafe

Lead DesignerPan Fei
Design TeamShao Zhi-Bang Han Dong Li Xiao-Han
PrizeInterior Design / Hospitality

This project is located at the east side of Beijing Jingyuan Arts Center. The owner wants to turn the first and second floors of the office building into a "free Café" where customers can stay and communicate freely. Because the client likes the mountain environment, so the client wish guest could smell the “hills” in this downtown café. Budget for such a café is limited, so we could only use common materials. What is very interesting is that the storey height for the first floor is 3.8 meters, which is too high for one floor, and not high enough for two floors, so the design of this space is full of challenge. So a crazy idea came to our mind suddenly, we dug down one meter at the center of the space, and then built a mezzanine over it. When customers walk into the dug “basement” through the mezzanine, an experience of “walking into the mountain” is presented. The floor height of the mezzanine is low, so inside it customers could only sit or lie; it is a good place for chatting for a couple of friends. A log cabin is built under the stairs leading to the second floor, and the stairs are hidden behind the log cabin. The second floor is divided into several small spaces, instead of using solid partitions, we use shelves of green plants. The natural shapes of the plants are changed as time passes by. Sit under the sunlight and with winds breezing, it must be the most cozy and comfortable experience! This is the freely-organized, flexible space, which is able to grow as it was alive. Every brick and wood here are signs of the workers’ efforts, and they are having a kind of dialogue with people within this space.