Posted on 24 October 2016
Located within the beautiful surroundings of the Bomonti Historic Brewery in Istanbul, Kilimanjaro is a restaurant and bar designed by studio Autoban. The completed space manages to preserve and exhibit the original character and features of the encompassing structure whilst applying a brand new visual identity of the restaurant. Staying true to its original design, Autoban have selected materials such as contrasting light and dark woods alongside jet black industrial metals to compliment and relate to the main fabric of the building whilst using them in innovative ways to create a visual divide.
The centrepiece of the design is the striking dual level curvaceous bar, an artistic sculpture that appears to be caught in motion. Divided into multiple sections, the lighter wood has been used to create a caged area above the bar that leans to one side. The darker wood forms a slightly larger and higher cage, leaning in the opposite direction to create a juxtapose between layers. These cages create unique display spaces, drawing the eye up to the centre of the room to exhibit the grand scale. Whilst displaying a range of palms and plants, the display area can easily be altered to transform the look and feel of the bar.
Wooden wall paneling encases the lower half of the room, bearing a multi layered geometric pattern that has been specially created for the project. The paneling plays a key role within the design, not only as a visual astetic that graciously divides the new structure with the old, but as a way to conceal facilities and technological components without damaging or effecting the original fabric of the building, esentially creating a room within a room. The layered geometric style of the paneling has also been replicated and reworked into a flat 2D form allowing it to be used as the flooring, creating a unity in design.
Restoration and historical buildings create some of the most fascinating and outstanding designs that we see today. Whilst their presence can look graceful and effortless, the design and restoration can be incredibly challenging. Kilimamjaro is a true example of the quality that can be achieved with talent, skills and passion demonstrated by Autoban. Not only has the brewery been restored to its former glory, the space has been adapted and transformed into something it was never intended to be. It is this evolution of historical structures, allowing them to continue their stories that is even more impressive than the beautiful finished designs themselves.