Zumbo Cafe Melbourne
The second project completed by the designers saw them undertake the design and (where possible) assembly of the Front of House fit out for the first Adriano Zumbo store in Melbourne, creating a delectable fantasy world with a slightly kinky twist – classic designer. First venture into Victoria! Hundreds of mirrored panels and pink neon dominate the modern interior, reflecting Adriano’s own style of patisserie – quirky, innovative and appealing to the eye.
The brief for this project involved the design of an internal shell for the patisserie’s front-of-house component, and furniture, signage and window graphics. The design brief was very open and the only proviso was that the design was to be true to the Zumbo brand, which the design team interpreted to be playful, innovative and a little bit pink. The main challenge stemmed from developing an actual method to turn the design concept into a reality. The team researched different methods of creating a moulded-mirror-like surface that could be easily constructed into a panelled wall and ceiling. The method was developed through experimentation with a team of enthusiastic manufacturers. Complementing both the liquid nature of the vinyl graphic and the playful nature of patissier Adriano Zumbo’s products, eccentric furniture pieces were also designed by the talented young interior designers at Elenberg Fraser. Fitting with the sweet nature of the store, the effect appears like oozing marsh-mallows, dripping gelato or sandwich cakes drenched in icing.
“Zumbo Melbourne is a decadent and tongue-in-cheek retail interior. It reflects patissier Adriano Zumbo’s own evolving, playful and experimental approach to creation – mixing unexpected materials, processes and finishes in innovative ways to produce a unique experience. Elenberg Fraser has cleverly used industrial techniques and materials alongside other traditionally made cabinetry, custom signage and lighting to produce a dramatic interior. This is pure fantasy, indulgence and experimentation at its best and successfully creates a surprising and truly memorable retail experience.” – Jury Citation/Australian Interior Design Awards
“Adriano Zumbo’s first Melbourne patisserie needed to be something that stood out from the pack – and that’s where Elenberg Fraser came in. The practice took experimentation to the next level with the ‘Graduate School’ – up-cycled old pieces of furniture were transformed into larger-than-life confectionary creations, while walls were made magical with vacuum-formed and metallised wall panels.” – Culinary luminary/Interior Design Excellence Awards (IDEA Awards)
Masterchef luminary Adriano Zumbo’s first Melbourne patisserie needed to be something that stood out from the pack – and that’s where we came in. Taken on as our second annual ‘Graduate School’ program, a team of junior architects and designers were given free reign on the front of house fitout for the patisserie wunderkind.
The brief was simple – stay true to the Zumbo brand and use a bit of pink – so the design team took matters into their own hands. They expanded the response to include the graphic design for signage and lighting as well as custom-designed furniture, creating a delectable fantasy world with a slightly kinky twist – classic Zumbo and classic Elenberg Fraser.
The results make Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory pale in comparison; the retail experience was revolutionised using a variety of new techniques and technologies. Entering the space, your eyes are drawn to the bright pink neon sign, which uses a specially designed typeface and illuminates the space with a candy-coloured glow.
Amplifying the effect are the mirrored plastic wall panels, which give the feeling of infinite depth. These were vacuum-formed and metallised, and then treated with aluminium vapour to achieve the reflective finish and installed by the design team.
We took the experimentation to the next level with the furniture – up-cycling old pieces and transforming them into larger than- life confectionary creations by adding self-expanding foam and dipping them in pink and white silicone. Sit on these and let your imagination run wild – are they melted marshmallows or dripping icecream?
An important element of the Graduate School program is hands-on construction experience and all the furniture was fabricated by Elenberg Fraser.
We run the Elenberg Fraser Graduate School because we believe that the new generation has the power to reinvent the practice. At Zumbo, the proof is in the pudding – this is a space that is good enough to eat.
Project name: Zumbo Cafe Melbourne
Location: 14 Claremont St, South Yarra VIC 3141
Coordinates: -37.837894, 144.993901
Type: Cafe / Coffee Shop
Project Area: approx 80 sqm
Completion Year: 2014
Client / Owner / Developer: Adriano Zumbo
Interior Designer: Elenberg Fraser – Level 1, 160 Queen Street, Melbourne Victoria 3000, Australia
- Thomas Orton, Kim Lai, Reade Dixon, Jansen Aui, Peter C Scott, Toby Flaye, Richard Pattison, Elizabeth White
Contractor: Brady IPS
Building Surveyor: Gardner Group
Vacuum Former: Castform Patterns & Plastics
Vacuum Metallizing: Zeus Products
Joinery: Art Stevens Cabinets
Furniture: Anthony Camm Upholstery/ Alex Rains Furniture
Stainless Steel Contractor: Designer Panel Systems
Neon Lighting: Delta Neon
Window Graphics: Tint Designs
Text Description: © Courtesy of Elenberg Fraser, Australian Interior Design Awards, IDEA Awards, architectureau
Images: © Elenberg Fraser, Peter Clarke Photography, flickr-JasonCondie, flickr-catherine de boer