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Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Mind-Boggling Buildings and Vineyards, Alentejo, Portugal

The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)

You don't need to be an architectural whizz to appreciate some of the world's most chic, futuristic places to spend your money, but we will leave it to the experts when it comes to actually deciding which ones are worth a visit. Publisher, Taschen, has the final word on cool in its new Architectural Now! book called Fat Shop Drink, and they shared 11 extracts with us.

Galleria Centrecity, Cheonan, South Korea
The architect:
 UNStudio
It is: a shopping mall

The exterior of the building creates an optical illusion with two layers of customised aluminium extrusion profiles on top of a back layer of composite aluminium cladding. Waves of colour cross the facade at night. The architects have also created a VIP Room, art centre and customerwhite service zones.

The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)

The architect: Rojkind Arquitectos

It's a: Restaurant

he project was carried out in a former house, the residential interior of which was stripped out. The client sought a Japanese interpretation that would be 'contemporary and cosmopolitan'. The unusual facade was made of two self-supporting layers of steel plates cut with a CNC machine and then handcrafted.



The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)


The architect: Hakuhodo


It is: a shop



The And Market concept was developed by Atsushi Muroi and Hattori Kimitaro for Japan's first smart phone retailer that is not part of a major mobile phone company. Customers can buy phones, accessories and applications, and benefit from various membership services, not confined to any one certain carrier both in the retail shop and on the website.


The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)
The architect: Concrete


It is: a restaurant



The IQ Creative Group decided to revive this restaurant which was a well-known fixture of Amsterdam in the 70s and 80s. referring to the Dutch tradition of putting Persian rugs on tables, they designed a floor made of Portuguese cement that tiles that recall the pattern of these rugs. In the style of a brasserie, Witteveen is both a bar and a restaurant, open all day. 


The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)

The architect: 2G arquitectos

It is: a nightclub

The Nébula or Lightcloud is a small discotheque. The space concerned served as a bar and had been completely soundproofed, allowing the architect to carry out the new design with a considerable cost saving but requiring him to respect the existing envelope to the greatest extent possible. Juan Manuel González from 2G arquitectos calls the result an 'intelligent environment of light and sound'.


Architect: David Lynch
It is: a nightclub
Silencio is located at 142 Montmartre in Paris, in an 1883 building on the site of the headquarters of the newspaper La France. The structure subsequently served as the Paul Dupont printing houses. David Lynch conceived the interior design and furniture, and even the carpets of Silencio. The basic colour scheme is a gold monochrome including a good deal of actual gold leaf.

The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)

The architect: Estudio Nómada
It is: a cafe and shop

The project is situated in two structures next to the Archive of Galicia, part of Peter Eisenman's Galician City of Culture. The architects broke through preecisting walls to link the two spaces of cafe and shop with one long, shared bar, recalling the typology of Galician village canteens.

The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)

The architect: Rizoma Arquitectura
It is: a shop

Located in the grounds of the Inhotim Contemporary Art Center, this shop is intended for the sale of plants and garden utensils. The architects explain: 'The shop is simply an open shelter to keep the products protected from the weather. It consists only of four elements: two service boxes and two walls.' Like the Oiticica restaurant, the Botanical Shop, made with concrete, wood and stone, was erected in a very brief, three-month period.

The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)
The architect: March Studio
It is: a shop

The architects say: 'The wood of choice for this store is Victorian ash, a timber grown in renewable forests across Australia. The wood was cut in a factory in Melbourne's inner-city suburb of Richmond, then each of the approximately 3,500 pieces was hand-cut, hand-sanded, sealed, and numbered according to meticulously drafted plans before being strategically packed in shipping crates.' Created in 1987 in Melbourne, Aesop markets products for the skin, hair and body, presented here on an accumulation of ash planks.

The mere mortal acts of eating, shopping and drinking have suddenly become very cool. (© Rex Features)
The architect: Marcio Kogan
It is: a hotel

Located in the Alentejo area of Portugal, L'And Vineyards includes a 22-suite exclusive country club hotel and a residential development. The central reception building contains a 'contemporary reinterpretation of Roman and Arabix atrium architecture', creating a generous living room, library and gift shop offering vineyard products. The central building also houses a winery, a 'wine club', an 800-square-metre spa, a courtyard restaurant and lobby lounge area.

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