ANCHO MEXICAN GRILL IV
PROJECT: Transformation of existing
facility to a restaurant
LOCATION: Monastiraki, Athens, Greece
FLOOR AREA: 125 m2
DESIGN: km architecture studio
ARTWORK: Apollonas Glykas, Zeta Nikolopoulou
GRAPHIC DESIGN: Teokon Design
PHOTOS: km architecture studio
The restaurant is housed in a two-storey listed historical building, with a basement and a mezzanine, located in the heart of the historic triangle of Athens, on the pedestrian street of Aiolou.
The aim of the design was to combine the modern trend of street-food, as has been done in the chain's previous stores, with the history of the building. Thus, a more "restaurant" approach to street-food was chosen and the new functions were integrated into the building, without disturbing its shell.
The high-ceilinged ground floor, accommodates the restaurant’s principal functions. In the background, the kitchen is organized in a semi-transparent box like a capsule inside the shell of the building, made of steel and glass. The linear metal elements of the construction end in curves-arches, which refer to hacienda architecture element. In front of the kitchen and perpendicular to the facade, the buffet, from ceramic bricks, develops and continues towards the entrance of the store, bends and turns into a bar, clad in glossy green tiles.
The L- shaped part of the ground floor, where the functional areas of the restaurant are developed, is covered with a free metal roof, made of oxidized sheet metal.
The dining area on the ground floor, is formed opposite the buffet, consists of a single sofa that runs along the entire length of the main wall and is framed by a mural that occupies the largest part of this wall.
On the mezzanine, the two-storey space with a glass roof was preserved, its entrance highlighted with a large neon sign and turned into w.c, inserting a "box" camouflaged with a metal canvas, on top of its roof. Parts of the canvas were covered with ceramic sunshades and plants, the shadows of which create a 'cosy' atmosphere. The linear stone washbasin, designed exclusively for this store, covers one side, while the walls, up to some height, have been covered with stone bricks.
The materials chosen for the restaurant are natural: metal, terracotta, stone, stucco and the colors are earthy, so as to blend harmoniously with the historic building, but also to give a mexican identity.
Decoration is achieved mainly with architectural-structural (ceramic bricks, glazed colored tiles, metal panels, bespoke ceramic lights etc), and graphic design elements (mural, neon sign, colorful elements on the menu) ‘discreetly’ targeted to mexican culture.