Collaborators: Arch. Sila Giriftinoglu Arch. Harald Kofler
Interior design: Roland Baldi architects Gruppe Gut Heike Linster
In the hearth of the city in Bozen, in an 18th century building, the first restaurant, market and wine house of the international brand italia&amore, opened its doors. The office of Roland Baldi Architects has been commissioned with the structural and creative implementation of the company concept, which stands for natural, authentic, Italian quality food, that are produced according to ancient traditions by small producers. The restoration work covered up the whole building: the historic façade has been restored. The decorations and the ornaments are maintained while on the ground floor the glass surfaces were united and enlarged to give better luminosity to the interior and greater communication with the pedestrian street. The flagshipstore is articulated in 5 floors, each featuring a different atmosphere, whereby the different functions blend and dissolve to give the customer a unique experience of discovery, shopping, and gastronomy. The result is an open, welcoming place that transforms each visit into a multi-sensory experience. On the ground floor, guests are welcomed by a casual environment characterized by a long sharing table and an outdoor pergola where shopping facilities are displayed and recalls the idea of the square and the market. The floors are divided by function: on the ground floor the bar-pizzeria, on the basement floors the market and the wine-cellar, on the upper floors restaurants, more informal one for the pasta and the refined one for meat and fish. The large staircase connecting the five floors serves to give a sense of unity to the environments and has been interpreted as a single large shelf where culinary products, cooking books, design objects and curiosities are exposed. On the third level visitors find the terrace that represents a Mediterranean garden above the roofs of Bozen, is characterized by glass fountain that, with a cut on the floor, floods light to the top floor of the restaurant. In the interior and scenic design, developed by Roland Baldi in collaboration with the communication studio Gruppe Gut and Heike Linster, a mix of modern furnishings, craftsmanship and Italian vernacular quotes was sought. The setting is inspired by the cult film " The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover” by the artist and director Peter Greenaway. At the level of visual communication, the entire building is conceived and focused on the contrast between kitchens and dining rooms. The dining rooms are characterized by different colour tones for each floor, creating warm and lively atmospheres, with soft lights and natural materials, while the kitchens are completely monochromatic and thought to emphasize the scenic aspect of food preparation, in these charming environments by dominating the tones of white or black, with glossy and reflective surfaces to highlight the professionalism of the workmanship and to give a sense of purity, refinement and sensuality. Materials and furnishings follow a contemporary language but rich in quotations of Italian culture. Therefore, the kitchens were covered with enamelled sheets, colourful cement tiles were inserted to the resin floor, the selected materials are natural wood, brass and iron, while the lamps in the form of damigiane are a clear reference to the domestic and popular iconography of "Belpaese".