Restaurants and bars


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Bar Lobo

Francesc Rifé, interiorista

Description Technical file

In one of the most vibrant areas of Barcelona, next to the Ramblas, is the Lobo bar. This is a part of the city that harmonises the aesthetic of the Gothic with a contemporary fresh design and offers it to both tourists and Barcelona dwellers. Bar Lobo is precisely that: a combination of the old and the new in an atmosphere that breathes design in all its details. In fact it was the restoration of a historic 1880 building that produced the space: a bar and fusion food restaurant based on Mediterranean scents and dishes retouched with more exotic and bold perfumes. Rice, pastas, salads and several tapas specials where even the placemats are pure design. Pure contrast, detail and light.
The Tragaluz group, a highly recognised restaurant company with other establishments in the city asked for just that (even in its name: luz – light). On this basis, a double space for two different uses unified by the same rational treatment of the space. Three colours, neutral black and beige, with drops of green. The bar, on the corner of the old building, is filled with a few rhetorical details, something that gives it elegance and amplitude. Almost an exercise in the purity of materials.
Layout. The main door leads to an open space of Mediterranean party spirit and brilliance. The unfolding of the windows finished in the same antique style of black iron maintains the unity of the facade and gives it brightness.
To the left, a series of tables arranged next to the wide windows follow two lines of benches, an irregular one and a more lineal one. Both follow the facade line and give movement and direction to this zone of the bar.
To the right is the bar in Zimbabwe black granite, and the access to kitchens and staircase. In this more straight-lined and slightly more formal zone are the woks.
Four elements preside over the restaurant on this level, the more raised central dining area finished in black-tinted pine, the large windows, the buffet with views of the grill and the semi-circular lintel in a corner.
The central space is more reduced owing to its lower ceiling in black and to the warm and intimate treatment given to the wood.
The external ring has a double height and a different, more open concept. From this point onward one can only suspect some other type of activity in the top floor.
The lintel in the corner is a clever way of covering up for the irregular floor plan of the premises.
On the outside of the colonial-style building is the sculpture of a man, but inside the design team chose to cover the vaulting in a manner that brings together the rest of the elements of the restaurant. To some extent it has been treated as a streetlamp, pasted with posters announcing activities. It is a changing report on the music in the city, of top theatre or fashion events.
All these components are arranged in orderly fashion while providing a view of activities in many senses while one is sitting down comfortably.
The top floor has been treated with the same palette and the same wide windows, with the highest area destined for coffee and drinks. It has a peaceful atmosphere with a perfect view of the lower area and of the adjacent square, in which in summer tables are placed.
It contains a sofa and an impressive bar, both in black. In this area, the wood is predominantly light. On one hand, tinted pinewood given an aged texture by sanding it. On the other the staircase, the kitchen, the office and the lavatories, which are covered in this material and separate the service areas from the more public space.
The unisex lavatory is another highly interesting element on this floor. Situated at the head of the stairs, it is finished in a cool light-type glass in a fresh green shade. The effect of this is that one can see the interior from the outside, while from the actual lavatory one can see both one’s own reflection on the mirror-type material and the exterior, depending on the amount of light in the two zones.
The result is a rhythm of geometric volumes. An unfolding of simple pulchritude and order is the ingredient for this cosmopolitan atmosphere. An active yet warm fragment of urban life.

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Localización: Barcelona. Autor: Estudio Francesc Rifé. Francesc Rifé, interiorista. Construcción: Blausmo Santa Coloma. Promotor: Bar Lobo, grupo Tragaluz. Fotografía: Eugeni Pons.
Francesc Rifé
Eugeni Pons
Lloret, Girona