Paris – The name of Paris hospitality space Back in Black refers not to its interiors but its espresso-coloured – and flavoured – offerings: it’s a speciality coffee shop with an in-house roastery. Following the first address of KB Coffee Roasters in South Pigalle, the Bastille café was designed by Minnaërt Studio with a decidedly minimalistic approach. Adopting this style allowed the design team to put full emphasis on the artisanship behind the beverages, explains French-Australian architect and academic Frank Minnaërt.
Spacious, bright and left largely undecorated, the interiors prioritize the product, the teamwork behind the coffee and the total transparency that goes into both. ‘In the context of interior architecture – especially combined with a heavily competitive industry like hospitality – the quest for a unique identity and originality of design can often be misinterpreted as the need for an overdose of decoration,’ says Minnaërt. ‘Contrary to this quest, the impulse to over-design and decorate actually works to obscure the fine anthropological layer of a project. So, in contrast, the leading idea for this project was not to hide away the processes involved in creating the venue or the products on offer.’