Art & Caffeine is the first flagship store of Faema, the legendary Milanese coffee machine brand. It’s a creative meeting space for discussing and sharing everything to do with coffee culture. The space has been created by the renovation of a warehouse in a small industrial zone in via Forcella thatarose between 1891 and 1931 along the Milan– Vigevano railway line. In addition to housing a longestablished bicycle company, the warehouse had previously mainly been used for roasting coffee. The warehouse’s restoration involved the careful recovery of the nineteenth-century riveted steel structures and the brick walls with lime plaster. These were integrated into a modern structure of exposed systems, designed to give prominence to the coffee machines and the visitors’ experience. Art&Caffeine is a multiple space in which repair-shop activities of fixing and customizing coffee machines, coffee roasting, coffee workshops and reception and co-working activities all coexist in synergy.
The renovation deliberately makes use of “raw” materials in line with those originally used in the nineteenth-century factory: charred larch floors, rough-iron display structures and stencil graphics on the walls. “Light” was the main material used in the initiative aimed at making the most of the operational areas. It was manipulated in various scenarios to adapt it to the natural exterior light and hallmark the experience, linked to the different uses of the space. Beams of cool light pick out the stainless steel surfaces of the Faema espresso machines, while warm, diffuse lights bathe the work surfaces and cup racks. The warehouse’s antique walls are lit with a grazing, changing light that is integrated into the floor to highlight the textures of the old plastered brick walls, and to be able to vary the way the space is perceived depending on the activities in progress. The flagship store, the first in the world in the morethan- 70-year history of the Gruppo Cimbali brand, is intended primarily for baristas and others involved in the world of coffee. However, it will also be open to the public during the major events that every year make Milan the capital of design (Design Week), food (Food Week) and fashion (Fashion Week), as well as during other important initiatives scheduled to take place in the city.