Greeks love their coffee; they may not consume as much caffeine as the Scandinavians who top the per capita list, but they definitely are the champions in the amount of time they spend in coffee houses where a cup of coffee with friends lasts on average one and a half to two hours. Walk along the main street of any Greek town and you’ll see countless cafés packed all day long with people. In fact, the “kafenion”, the traditional Greek café, has been the social hub of towns and villages for centuries. Coffee making has of course evolved since the time it was simply brewed in metal pots as have coffee houses and the experience they offer as a steady stream of new ventures attests. This is also the case for “ESPRESSONIST The Edition”, a new concept by popular coffee chain The Espressonist in Xanthi in Northern Greece. Conceived as a premium edition that marries sophistication with innovation, the café was designed by Yiannis Pouspourikas Design Studio with a focus on the customer’s spatial experience. Mixing mid-century modern and retro-futuristic inspirations, the space revels in the theatrics of coffee making while embracing cool refinement.
The designers have put coffee making front and centre with an eye-catching coffee counter at the heart of the space with seating lining the walls on either side. Featuring a sleek, aerodynamic design, the futuristic coffee counter makes for a bold statement amid the sumptuous wood and leather banquettes, plaster stripped walls and geometric floor tiles. It’s not all show and no game though – the stainless-steel structure features a “coffee carousel”, a suspended conveyor belt that has been designed to mechanically streamline coffee delivery; it also makes for an interesting piece of theatrics to watch as you drink your coffee.
Echoing the metallic shine of the coffee counter, the stainless-steel façade draws customers in, while the custom-made metallic lighting system picks up the counter’s retro-mechanical aesthetic with numerous pendants adding retro vibes. Metal finishes can also be found in the minimalist-designed chairs and tables whose simple geometric forms complement the mid-century-inspired banquette seating. Finally, velvet curtains and leather upholstery in blue hues, a nod to The Espressonist’s brand identity, add a touch of colour to the otherwise achromatic interior.