Housed in a petit, fairy tale-like house in Moscow, the second outpost of Israeli café Abu Gosh eschews stylistic clichés of the Middle East for a funky aesthetic of bold, candy-shop colours and playful geometric patterns. Russian architecture and design practice STUDIO SHOO - who were also responsible for the interior design of the café’s sister venue - have channelled Israel’s exuberant spirit through a graphic language of geometric abstraction and vibrant hues while preserving the quirkiness of the historic building.
Entering via a midnight blue hallway, guests are transported into a fun, zany environment marked by the hand-finished tiles by Italian designer Elisa Passino. Featuring a vibrant colour palette of pink, cyan and cobalt blue, and a simple arched pattern, their design is echoed throughout the interior, from the neon pink chairs and blue-painted vintage water fountain, to the arched doorways, wall niches and shelving units. A muted backdrop via the white walls and ceiling makes the colour accents, which also include splashes of yellow, even more vibrant.
Centred on a communal table, the ground floor dining area includes a variety of seating options, from tables, to counters to window nooks, which make the compact space feel roomy and relaxed with the open kitchen adding to the lively atmosphere.
As colourful and laidback, the first-floor lounge has been designed for more intimate moments but can also host various gatherings, lectures and events thanks to the amphitheatre-like set up. Standing out in the middle of the space, a cherry-hued round table is built around a hole in the floor – an existing cavity that was once part of a chimney. Rather than filling it in, the designer took advantage of this redundant feature to connect the two levels by designing a two-piece chandelier which they hung from the roof trusses. Conceived as a tangle of blue piping, the whimsical chandelier not only encapsulates the fun-loving spirit of the café but furthermore attests to STUDIO SHOO’s creative sensibility.