% Arabica Coffee Shop – Shanghai, China

% Arabica Coffee Shop – Shanghai, China

arabica_shanghai9The newly renovated % Arabica coffee shop in the Xuhui District of Shanghai is another perfect example of the Small is the New Big trend that we’ve been observing for several years.

Regardless of its 50-square-metre (538 sq.ft) size, the café glows especially at night like a precious gemstone in the shade of mature wutong or Chinese parasol trees lining West Jianguo Road. The bold design makes a clear statement and ignores the universally accepted canon of maximizing retail space.

arabica_shanghai3

Designed by Shuhei Aoyama and Yoko Fujii, founders of the Beijing-based B.L.U.E Architecture Studio, with team members Lingzi Liu, Yixin Yang and Masaya Kawashima, the café takes full advantage of the street front.

arabica_shanghai4

More remarkably, the designers resisted the temptation to cram in tables, chairs or even a bar or shelves. The shop is in essence a white counter, enclosed in a curved-glass case. In the front area is a small rock garden that further ‘wastes retail space’ and separates the café from the sidewalk. The street is wide and charming in a calm and time-honoured way as it is part of the French Concession.

arabica_shanghai

We love the shop’s human scale that makes it stand out invitingly like a sculpture or a piece of art while the garden inside connects seamlessly with the trees lining the street.

arabica_shanghai_05

% Arabica Coffee is an independent coffee brand from Kyoto, Japan, with 55 stores in 13 countries. Founder and owner Kenneth Shoji grew up traveling the world from Tokyo with his manufacturer-trader father and learned to love different cultures, design and architecture. Later, he studied in California and immersed himself in the Venice Beach subculture where he learned to depend daily on the newly expanding Starbucks brand.

arabica_shanghai_07

Eventually Shoji started importing coffee beans and coffee roasting and espresso machines into Japan. In 2014, he started his own coffee brand, opening the first % Arabica café in Kyoto. The brand’s minimalist visual aesthetic is as beautifully expressed in this its latest shop renovation in Shanghai. Tuija Seipell

ARABIA1

Photographs: Eiichi Kano

ARABIA

The post % Arabica Coffee Shop – Shanghai, China appeared first on The Cool Hunter.

Lifestyle

Les Mills Fitness Club, Auckland City, New Zealand

Last year, after having been in business for more than 50 years, the New Zealand fitness powerhouse Les Mills completed the design of an additional facility across from its flagship location on Victoria Street in Auckland City. The addition is a thoroughly re-configured industrial building that now houses three new

Read More »
HQ Magazine

HQ Lockdown Guide – free until 1st June

The HQ Lockdown Guide is free for download from the following link until the 1st June. Get yours today! https://bit.ly/hq-eqldg The guide contains articles on getting back to riding, the power of mindfulness, the technique of visualisation, wonderful mental coaching advice from Linda Hennings of Forging Ahead and much much more! It is jam-packed with… Read More »HQ Lockdown Guide – free until 1st June

The post HQ Lockdown Guide – free until 1st June appeared first on HQ Magazine.

Read More »
Lifestyle

Casa RJ, Mantua, Italy

Sometimes we find ourselves contemplating our preferences. Or, let’s be truthful here, that’s all we ever do. We keep re-evaluating our preconceived notions and questioning whether we still like what we used to like, or have we discovered something that has changed our earlier views. One of the juxtapositions we

Read More »
Lifestyle

Villa Varoise, Var, France

The angular 5,300 square-foot (492 sq.metre) Villa Varoise is a project that took its time to become a reality. Boston-based architecture firm, NADAA, completed the initial plans for the residence in 2012 and broke ground on the site in 2013. The plans for the family retreat, then dubbed “Dortoir Familial” or

Read More »

AskHQ: Curry comb conundrum

Q: I have recently heard that plastic curry combs can do damage to horses’ hair, removing its natural oils. Is this true? What should I be using instead? Asked by Sam Waite A: Recent research has suggested that cheap plastic curry combs, especially those with sharp teeth, can cause damage

Read More »
Lifestyle

Penthouse M, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

Those familiar with the 1980s architecture will recall the curved whiteness and plastic-y expanses that were so modern then but today seem like tacky cruise-ship design. Some globally recognized buildings of that era include the Pan Pacific Hotel in Vancouver. Designed by architect Eberhard Zeidler the hotel is part of

Read More »