The building is located on a street that is lined with plane trees in Xuhui， Shanghai. The interior of the building has gone through a project which has completely transformed this brick-concrete building of the 1980’s into its modern view. The building has two floors with a total area of 200 square meters. Before the renovation， this building was a two-story brick-concrete building that was used as offices. As an important part of the French Concession business district， the Yongjia Road and its surroundings are working as a more engaging and integrated platform for the city’s daily consumer life. The owner of the space aims to manage an independent space in this vibrate environment.
The owner creates this unique space whose function is extendable and redefinable. HASHTAG # cafe # space # shop is a comprehensive living space that combines a cafe， an exhibition venue， a bar and a retail shop. The words # cafe # space # shop are three of the best terms used to define this site.
The first floor of the original building protruded slightly from the ground floor and entered the back of the building through an inconspicuous straight staircase. The renovation team firstly reconsidered and redesigned the volume and the proportion of the building with a minimal touch， indented the second floor of the new building， making the ground floor protrusive and formed a trapezoidal shape. The change of the proportion not only reduced the sense of oppression of the first floor onto the street， but also make it easier for passersby to look into the windows and have an idea of the activities that take place on the first floor. A hidden drainage ditch is set at the top of the protruding ground floor， which ensures a clean facade and brings a certain sense of strangeness to the project site.
The protruding ground floor could be easily sensed， but it does not have any actual working function， such as being a balcony. The design team aim to create uncertainty to the guests’ experience from such alteration.(Relationship between exterior design and the city).
In order to adapt to the flexibility of the function and ensure the structural safety of the building， the renovation team reinforced the foundation and the beam of the original building， supplemented the construction column at the opening， and re-cast part of the floor slab. The new structure is more like a restoration of the original building rather than a renovation. Due to the regulations of the City Management Bureau， the renovated building cannot hang signboards outside the building. Therefore， the team planned a small room at the right end of the ground floor as a parlour where the public could have access to the building. The parlour could not only display the signboard and exhibition information via LCD screens and posters， but also provide a covered， semi-open space for guests to shelter from rain and for short stays.
After fully entering the building， the guests could look through to the end of the building. The three groups of reinforced “holes” form the main spatial sequence. The edge of the hole corresponds to the trapezoidal style of the exterior and uses a decorative thin edge to dispel the sense of weight of the beam. A large table made of white sandstone is placed in the open space at the end of the space， and people can conduct a variety of activities around this table. The stools are designed with lower backs， to enable them to be completely stored under the table whenever needed(Internal space design).
The renovation preserves the stairs of the original building as a logistic passage. At the same time， the design team aim to provide a visually tall space between the two horizontal levels， which not only forms a difference in scale， but also increases the size of the scenery that the guests could see from inside the building. Additionally， this design could also cope with the flow of guests going up and down the stairs.From the bottom to the top of the stairs， the design team has used three colours， from black volcanic rock， gray granite to white paint. Continuing the color scheme of indoor and outdoor penetration， that is， the strategy of solid color at the bottom and white box at the top.
The design team has created a flexible and relaxing space for the guests. All objects in the building except the walls are designed to be independent. From the bar that can be surrounded at the entrance， the storage cabinets that are off the walls， the air-conditioning outlets hanging under the ceilings， to the benches by the windows， or even the dry trash cans that are normally hidden in conventional interior design， all of these items are all placed independently. In the selection of interior materials， the design team used materials with flattened texture with matte finish and pure colour. For example， the materials of the bar are made from black hot rolled iron plate and the stairs are featuring volcanic rocks. At first glance， these materials look like a monochrome surface， but when look closer， these materials show a finer texture.
Since the ground floor will be used as a cocktail bar at nighttime， in a minimalist and inconspicuous space， the lighting design plays an important role. We made a circle of colorur-adjustable RGBW light strips and luminous film on the walls of ground floor， and they are set to change to various colours with the change of music. The lights are set to warm white light mode in the daytime and iridescent colours in the night-time. The lighting changes every day， seven days a week， to make this plain and simple space in the daytime transforms into a colorful cocktail bar at night. The prop-like arrangement adds a temporary， dynamic experience to the space. At night， the colours of the lights on the ground floor changes with music and people can walk around and talk among these props without having to sit in one place.
In order to create natural light at the end of the first floor， part of the prefabricated roof was removed， and new skylights were added， to visually expand the space with the play of lights. In addition to a dining area and a kitchen， the three spans at the end of the second floor are all defined as exhibition spaces， so the materials of the walls and floors are covered with low-maintenance materials which could be easily restored. The concept of “curating” is gradually being accepted by commercial venues. The store manager wished to use this space as an exhibition venue for artworks and a venue for brand activities. In this Internet era， it seems difficult for commercial spaces to avoid the tag of “internet-famous site”. In the design of the store， we also use simple and strong contemporary methods to explore some of the experiences outside the image.
项目设计师：Chen Penn， Gao Ya
Project name：HASHTAG #cafe #space #shop
Location： 380 Yongjia Road， Shanghai
Project Completion Time： January 2020
Building area： 200㎡
Building Reconstruction and Interior Design： ONOAA STUDIO
Project Designer： Penn Chen / Gao Ya
Photography： Wen Studio