The newest project of Alberto Caiola offers a fundamentally different dining experience with anachronistic esthetics and combination between elegance and funkiness that is concealed behind a facade of a cheery sandwich shop. The enchanted and playful trip in this trendy Shanghai’s lounge starts in the first of the two premises (the project consist of two contemporary bar and dining spaces – Flask and The Press) – where neon lights, asymmetrical drop ceiling clad in copper and suspended cubical forms, hanging above vintage leather sofas, capture immediately the imagination of the visitor. The polished minimalism of the furnishings is set against unfinished walls and floors made from rough concrete that bring certain severe esthetics to the premises. This urban contemporary approach is supplemented by the snuggling warmth of the color scheme were the dark, moody colors bring coziness and the shining of the lightning solutions is softly reflected from different surfaces (brass, glass, leather).
A vintage Coca-Cola vending machine that opens into intriguing Allis – in wonderland like tunnel makes the connection between the two spaces and leads into the more intimate atmosphere of the Flask. Here the designers created two artistic and capturing installations featuring bottles of liquor. The first is a floor-to-ceiling shelving unit, with 25 liter whiskey bottles that are illuminated by a spotlight, and the amber glow of the liquid inside adds to the cozy feeling of the space. The second is a wall installation featuring rows of flasks that are hidden behind a mysterious layer of textile. Artistic touches like these add to the playful and entertaining atmosphere creating the lounge’s unique character and supplementing the dark, dim and mysterious emanation of the color palette and the furnishing choices. Lighting throughout the venue is kept intimate and muted, with several base points each emitting a warm glow of light that bounces off one another. The most prominent of these is the copper lighting arrangement in the inside of the drop ceiling, which diffuses subtle amber light from the overhead. Photographs: Shen Zhonghai