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Bone’s Minimalist Cafe Hoof Reinterprets Countryside Equine Architecture Through Brutalist Design

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Name
Project
Hoof
Photographer
Words

Located in Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates, the spartan cafe ‘Hoof’ completed by Dubai-based design studio Bone rejects conventional design stereotypes, exploring instead the functional aspects of horse stables while embodying aesthetics of Brutalist architecture.

The space was commissioned by three friends with a shared devotion for horses and show jumping, and a passion for specialty coffee. Using these intriguing aspects as their architectural drive, the studio designed a minimal and familiar space that would functionally and aesthetically recall horse stalls, through earthy materiality, industrial mechanisms, and detailed construct techniques. In their own words, “Hoof embodies a Brutalist reinterpretation of countryside equine architecture where the physical discrepancies between noble, interior, and exterior materials, as well as utilitarian and natural finishes, play an integral role in defining a sensorial architecture.”

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Fragmented across the space, the coffee bar is characterized by a deconstructed series of hand-brushed stainless steel blocks, each one isolated to “allow for an enhanced appreciation of each of the different coffee making processes,” explains the studio. Reminiscent of horse water-troughs, narrow bar sinks are fitted with stainless-steel taps and are meant to serve both the baristas and customers. Perpendicular banquettes in a lime finish surround the bar on either side, ensuring a flawless spatial dynamic. To offset the industrial feel of the steel, Bone used muted hues and warm colors elsewhere in the space. Walls and ceilings are covered in rustic, clay-straw plaster while terracotta semi-exposed aggregate concrete and resin-bound sand has been used for flooring. Woven wool cushions by Swedish textile brand Astrid, fluted-glass wall lights by Lebanese brand PS Lab, and ceiling spotlights by Flos all add to create a look of rustic elegance as well as a diffused and welcoming atmosphere.

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Images © Oculis