Construction of the new Altro and Zinc Bar at the Nambour RSL is now complete. The overall aesthetic sought was an honest, rich, unpretentious authenticity with a modern twist – a contemporary café and bar that exuded warmth and style.
The client wanted the venue to have a ‘pub’ feel to the bar and the café to have a European edge to it. When customers approach the new addition from the outside they are greeted by a modern building form made up of a combination of natural honest materials – timber, brick and metal cladding to reflect copper. These materials are then replicated internally so inside and outside are seamlessly connected.
Once inside, customers approach the new café and its large portal windows which are to be reminiscent of windows of a building facing a cobble street. The ‘street’ that leads you to other parts of the club is lined in natural stone ‘travertine’ to reflect the old, narrow cobble stone streets of Europe. From this ‘street’ patrons can view through to the café diners beyond, getting glimpses rather than full view vision. These portals / windows create intimacy and enclosure for café customers when dining and looking out to the ‘street’ and patrons beyond.
The new venue is broken up into a variety of dining and drinking experiences and settings. The café mirrors a European café with rich colours, natural stone bench tops, timber floors and chairs. The space is intimate but is fresh and exciting, something that is demonstrated in the food concept.
A green wall that forms a back drop to the café offers a splash of colour and natural greenery that almost feels as if you are sitting in a courtyard. Food is the hero, with the kitchen and cold display designed in a way to tempt customers to sit and enjoy the food. This also brings energy and atmosphere to the café and diners and patrons beyond in the ‘street’.
Adjacent to the café is the lounge and bar. Upon entry to the bar through the timber portal, a marble and zinc bar is located on the right. This bar exerts solidity and has a strong presence in the room. A black ‘crocodile’ tile wall forms a dynamic back drop to this space. Again, natural honest materials are combined to form a warm and comfortable space to enjoy a drink. The space is broken down to create smaller, more intimate spaces by introducing a central 2 way fireplace and a high communal dry bar. The fireplace not only divides the spaces but also introduces the external face brick work into the interior.
A key aspect to the bar / lounge design was to create a space that will age well over time, and feels warm and inviting during the day and night with a strong connection to the outside. This has again been achieved by blending honest finishes – marble, zinc, face brick, stone tiles and timber. These materials weather naturally and date gracefully. When enjoying the bar space during the day, filtered natural light fills the space. At night, carefully selected accent lighting creates an ambient mood setting.
Stacking doors slide back to introduce the outdoor. Large potted trees allow patrons to sit at the fixed mosaic dry bar and enjoy the mountain range to the east from an elevated position. The tall vaulted timber lined box that encloses the deck also frames the views that can be enjoyed not only from the deck, but from deep inside the bar’s interior.
Little nooks are also integrated beside the bar where smaller groups of two can sit comfortably away from the busier open spaces. The new venue becomes a series of different spaces and experiences which are carefully brought together by a palette of honest materials.