Na Mata Café
Location: São Paulo – SP, Brasil
Type of Construction: Commercial
Site area: 520m²
Building area: 900 m²
Project Beginning: 2010
Construction completion: 2011
Authors: Fernando Forte, Lourenço Gimenes, Rodrigo Marcondes Ferraz
Coordinators: Ana Paula Barbosa, Sonia Gouveia
Contributors: Juliana Nohara, Carolina Matsumoto, Flavio Faggion
Interns: Bruno Milan
Photographer: Fran Parente
Foundation and Structural Engineering: Foz Engenharia
Lighting design: Castilha Iluminação
Suppliers: Cia Paulista, Fernando Jaegger, W3 Comunicação Visual, P4 Vidros
Na Mata Café is a traditional restaurant and concert venue in São Paulo. By involving ourselves in this project we found out that the venue was packed with history in such a larger proportion than the one we have originally expected: before becoming Na Mata Café, it was the bar so called Popular, and prior to this, in the 1970’s, it was the well-known Clyde’s bar. There are even those who say that the original construction was a project by Vilanova Artigas, however, this fact still remains unproved.
All these years of activity cost a series of small renovations to the venue, made one over the other, which led to a not so clear identity and a partition that could not meet the fluidity and spatiality needed for a good operation of the concerts versus restaurant duality.
Our proposal had to be based on the maintenance of certain pre-existing aspects due to matters of execution deadline – as a consequence, the kitchen and some other items have been kept back to their originals. We opted to make a more radical change in the rest using materials, finishings and illumination in order to create a clear identity for the venue and its different areas.
The front portion, that of the restaurant, was completely remodeled – the entrance access, all made of glass, allows one to see through all the movement inside. The façade, made of cement finishing, is more discrete and the visitor is invited to the entrance in such a clearer way. The long bar has been kept, but in the foreground there is a long panel (over 12 meters of length) made of “butcher’s little letters” writing the menus, the bands of the week, curiosities and other activities from Na Mata. This element, existent in the previous project, have been reinterpreted and applied in a new, much more emphasized way. New furniture has been designed by our office for the restaurant area.
The walls and the ceilings have received stickers with a standard of orange circles, graphic design developed to be the new identity of Na Mata. This graphic design has also been applied in the concert area and on the second floor, unifying the venue, going in an opposed direction of that of the former proposal. The circles are orange with varied diameters in order to assume a random standard on the vinyl sticker and giving a look to the whole edifice internally. The illumination is integrated to this standard, with luminaries always occupying the space of some circles.
A reorganization of the back, the concert area of the nightclub, was very advantageous: the stage have been expanded 50% and the restructured dance floor remained the same size, but gained in perspective, besides the VIP areas on both sidelines, the most wanted area of the floor currently. A discrete support bar avoids the flow to the front of Na Mata where the main bar is placed.
Besides a new, much clearer identity in its different areas, the intervention proposed to Na Mata was able to intensify its previous vocations – a new, cosmopolitan restaurant, ready to host invited chefs (Na Mata’s proposal), and a much more organized concert venue, ready to receive all sorts of musicians and bands.