Evolution Bar by Sebastian Barlica, Bucharest – Romania

October 6th, 2012 by retail design blog

Located at the historical centre of Bucharest known as “Cafeneaua Veche” (The Old Café), the eclectic Evolution Bar is designed – using HI-MACS® – in contrast with the old 18th century neo-gothic building’s style in which is inserted, bringing a fresh and contemporary feel for the new interiors. Evolution Bar – situated in the basement of the building – is part of a major renovation project by young designer Sebastian Barlica.

The owners’ desire was to design a space with a Mediterranean restaurant on the ground floor and a night club in the basement. The basement area is a brick vault with transverse arches; it has a relatively small net area and it was used initially for storage, so the task of transforming it into a contemporary space for clubbing and nightlife entertainment was quite challenging.

That is why the designer came up with the idea of harmonizing, on one hand, stylized classical decorative elements with byzantine-like paintings on the main transverse arch, and, on the other hand, contemporary furniture and decorations using Solid Surface HI-MACS®. To this end, the countertops were designed in the shape of classical fireplace mantels painted in contemporary colours and the chandeliers are made of garden hoses. The oriental carpet-like stone flooring features contemporary motifs and a bottle support is suspended above the bar like a transparent honeycomb. The HI-MACS® bar itself is an eye-catching Light Green colour.

Internal space is maximized with a large, central floating green organic bar made entirely out of HI-MACS®. The designer opted for the Solid Surface material because no other material could have been molded into such an unusual shape, while showcasing all its great properties. This main focus of the entire project – the floating organic shape – consists of a 21 metres long organic shaped structure, achieved through thermoforming the HI-MACS®, introducing a modern contemporary feel to the interiors of the club.

“The material used in this project placed in a highly trafficked area vulnerable to scratches, had to be resistant to mechanical factors, hygienic, non-porous and durable, but at the same time had to allow a complete curved, coloured and smooth shape and HI-MACS® was the perfect choice. By sanding the surface can easily be repaired on-site. All great features that are critical when specifying materials for public spaces”, says the designer. The challenge of the fabrication of Sebastian’s project was undertaken by Atvangarde Surfaces, exclusive distributor for HI-MACS® in Romania.

Due to the design’s complex shape, the structure had to be divided into 25 parts with similar sections in order to produce the necessary moulds for the fabrication process by using a CNC milling machine to form a high density foam. The HI-MACS® flat sheets were then thermoformed into shape using a vacuum membrane press. The twenty five individual pieces were finally glued together and sanded to create a single seamless homogeneous object.

The bar provides enough room for 2 bartenders and a DJ and is equipped with everything necessary: sinks, ice tanks, shelves, storage areas, bottle storage and the DJ’s equipment area. The central part of the U-shape is dedicated to the DJ’s area and consists of a circular, cantilevered HI-MACS® shape. This gives the bar a floating effect, which was made possible by the addition of a metal frame placed inside and throughout the entire structure.

Photos: Ciprian Stoian, Serban Bonciocat


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