ISSUE 14  |  Warm Minimalism

Birdsong Cafe: A Modern Bistro with an Old-World Feel

April 07, 2014 1:00 PM

BY Izabella Simmons

Located in the quaint, up-and-coming village of Bandra, a suburb of West Mumbai, India, the Birdsong Cafe is a recently opened bistro with an all-organic kitchen and bakery, and seating on two stories. Architects Samir Raut and Amit Mayekar of Studio Eight Twenty-Three were asked to design a gathering place that reflects (and blends in) with its surrounding historic neighborhood. In response, they decided to use concrete and wood, materials that bestow a modern sensibility as well as a permanence: “We are vividly fascinated by the quality of both these materials to age in an elegant fashion,” say the architects.

Photographs via Studio Eight Twenty-Three.

Studio Eight Twenty-Three set out to create a space that feels both new and Old-World. Above L: A hand-painted sign. Above R: Round wooden tables, concrete planters, and a mix of seating choices.

Above: The entrance has tall arched windows and louvered shutters with double doors that open the cafe to the street. Leafy plants in concrete planters form a casual green wall.

Above: As you enter the cafe, you immediately notice the moss-green concrete floor. The bakery counter is made of natural-colored concrete cast on site. Chalkboard-painted walls display the menu.

Above: Pictures and descriptions of the food are drawn onto one of the walls.

Above: The main floor has exposed white-washed brick and is furnished with customized simple wooden tables and retro-styled folding chairs, some of them covered in a floral fabric. The cafe’s packaging is displayed in an inset wood-framed vitrine.

Above: The architects inserted a small mezzanine made from reclaimed teak; it’s used for live performances and as a quiet dining corner.

Above: Dimmable bulbs in customized reclaimed wood holders dance from the ceiling on a grid of hooks.

Looking for more hanging pendant light bulbs? See Hatched Restaurant in Singapore for more bulb inspiration. And if you love concrete as much as we do, check out our Remodeling 101 post on Polished Concrete Floors. On Gardenista, have a look at an indoor-outdoor Concrete Bench with a Side of Greenery.

Below: The Birdsong Cafe is on Waroda Road, in Bandra, West Mumbai, India: