Fine Café is located in a traditional Hutong area near Gong Wang Fu, a prince’s mansion of the Qing Dynasty. In this renovation project, the architects intend to highlight the contrast between history and modern life, and between traditional Beijing architecture and European style.


Like many old residences in Beijing, the building is dug on level ground, descending about one metre. To take advantage of this extra space, a loft is builtto divide the café into a lower space dominated by traditional Chinese style and an upper one by European elements.

第一层采用木制桌椅,均经手工打磨,以保留木头的肌理。定制的低桌及矮凳,使顾客能够体验传统的胡同生活方式。地面则为充满现代感的水磨石,特制的图案中加入了大块墨绿色大理石骨料,与咖啡馆的主色调墨绿色相呼应。二层风格截然不同,采用Art Deco风格的钢筋和19世纪古董欧式椅子,让顾客仿佛置身巴黎露台品味咖啡。而木制地板与保留的屋顶木梁,又与一层的风格有机融合。

The first floor is furnished with lowwood tables and stools specially designed to recreate the traditional Hutong lifestyle. The tables are all manually polished so as to preserve the texture of the wood. Against the traditional furniture is the customer-made terrazzo, the dark green marble aggregates in which echoes the same colour extensively used in the café.


On their way to the second floor, customers will pass by ahistorical archway of grey bricks. This was not in the original design. When realizing that the load-bearing arch could not be demolished, the architects decided to preserveit so that the café blends with the environment, for the grey bricks are widely used in the surrounding Hutong area. Imbedded in a shop serving coffee and pancakes, the arch gives quite a surprising effect.


Wood steps are installed as both sitting places and stairs leading to the French windows. In summer and autumn, the windows can be opened so that the interior of the café extends to the exterior. The split-level design, reinforced by multiple decorative mirrors, creates a complex, yet open and communicative space.








建筑师:朱彦文 田炳珉




Project information——

Project name: Fine Cafe

Architecture Firm: Atelier A + Be opposite architecture

Completion Year: 2018

Gross Built Area: 77.2 m2

Project location: Liuying street, Beijing, China

Photo credits:  Tian Binming

Lead Architects: Lily Zhu

Design Team: Tian Binming