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The Eastern District has always been one of the busiest and most popular areas in Taipei; it is full of subcultures with clusters of old apartment buildings, cafes, restaurants, and clothing stores, all mixed-in with fashionable young people. “Tea Street” has traditionally been an area full of open-front shops but nowadays people are requiring more privacy and exclusivity. Chloechen Café is a hidden gem that looks to set the standard in such modern trends.

Chloechen Café is located on the first floor of a 30 year-old apartment building. To mix a bit of old with new, the designer has kept the original cement walls and flooring and opened up the space to bring in the sunlight from the alley. To add an air of mystery plus exclusivity, customers need to find the hidden doorbell in the black wooden fence at the entrance and wait for the staff to open the door to enter.

Chloechen Café is hoping to make their customers feel welcome, comfortable and relaxed when they are in the cafe. The bar is the main focus of the design, just like an open kitchen is at the center of a home. The designer incorporated the idea of a kitchen island into the café by making the kitchen tabletop on an even level with the customers, which allows bartenders and chefs to have closer contact with their customers. To draw attention to the bar, the designer incorporated elevated marble in a black and white stripe pattern with orange spotlights casting across the top to make a memorable visual appeal.

The designer has mixed old and new by matching various materials, colors, and patterns to make the seating area warm and inviting. With long velvet sofas in mustard yellow, big slanted mirrors on the wall, wallpaper with blue-leaf prints, and decorated tin ceilings, along with pieces of antique furniture and lamps. By keeping the original cement wall and flooring as the background, it also makes the space feel multi-layered and elegantly unfinished.

With the evolution of times there are always new subcultures entering the old Eastern District. Mixing old and new has brought more diversity to Taipei. At Chloechen Café we see that the designer has catered to societal trends by mixing old and new in the design while keeping true to originality.

Design by MW Design

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