This is a project by Abelardo Gonzalez Arkitektbyrå and it is located at Stortorget, Malmö, Sweden. Project's program: Interior design of restaurant and lounge. There are six images for Lounge & Restaurant Caramello.
"Fact occupies itself with trying to reproduce fiction. " — Oscar Wilde, The decay of lying, 1891.
Designing a place for leisure and recreation allows one to implement the idea of fiction in interior design. In doing so, we explored the contrast between the concrete and the abstract, the figurative and the formal, and the real and the fictional.
The varying textures collaborated in terms of form, lighting, material and colour to generate opposing elements and create an environment in which there were spaces of highly differing character, despite all of them following the same basic laws.
We wanted to reproduce an urban-type environment analogous to that of the city of Istanbul. It was to be an urban environment with contrasting structures and with discontinuities of space on which very differing scales could be imposed — urban, interior or taken up with details.
Caramello is located near the centre of an area surrounded by places for leisure-time activities and nightlife. The Lilla Torg square, located just around the corner, is a very special and intimate meeting place in Malmö. It contrasts with the large Stortorget square, where fashion stores and movie houses abound. Caramello, located between these two squares, seems like both the culmination and the essence of these two very differing urban environments. It is designed as a place connecting the two and having continuity with both.
The interior is divided into zones in which points of entry and streets directing one through are intertwined. The entrance is orange in colour. A black street leads the visitor towards the lounge.
The lounge is located in the blue zone, which has a special typology. An atrium serves as the central square. The furniture there is flush with the wall, which is covered with mirrors, emphasizing the spatial density of a core, one that represents the entrance to an imaginary world and makes the presence of a spatial infinity visible.
Further into the interior, where there is a connecting link to more private areas, the colour becomes green. Arriving there, the visitor finds grey zones for smoking and, in continuing on to the upper level, a white zone, with restrooms.
There is a mezzanine at the upper level, providing a space to complement the atrium. This is the balcony section of the blue zone, which is also closely connected with the red zone. There, one finds a more intimate and sensual space meandering along on the boundary between kitsch and exotica.
After leaving this red zone, the next zone one encounters is a dining-area, symbolically connected with the entrance by its orange colour. Arriving at the entrance again, one realizes that Caramello, designed as an urban interior, describes a spatial sequence that starts at Stortorget and connects the large-scale character there with the more intimate space of the lounge, representing Lilla Torg.
The main glass façade exposes the interior, blurring the borders between fiction and reality, calling forth associations with Alice in Wonderland and the Magic Kingdom. This picture of things is the genuine façade of Caramello. This emphasized by three gigantic lamps projecting large magenta-coloured images at the brass-covered wall of the double-level foyer. The lamps seem to be floating in an interior space corresponding to the square external to it.
There is a line of high stainless steel tables directing the visitor back to the staircase. The black, long and straight-edged bar stands parallel to the stainless steel tables, completing the overall perspective. Like the straight passages and narrows streets, the stainless steel tables point out possible directions for the visitor to follow in entering the different zones in Caramello, just as the second floor, the bar and the passage leading to the atrium do as well. As a visitor, one finds oneself then back in the blue zone, entering the lounge. This is flanked by the mezzanine and is covered by a glass cupola.
Experiencing Caramello is to reproduce fiction, presenting places that are other places instead. Although we recognise them, they never actually existed, and only some of the elements there correspond to things we are genuinely familiar with. It is a place of fiction.