Bubble tea drinkers perch on tiers of cork seating around brightly coloured tables at this London cafe by architects Gundry & Ducker .
Gundry & Ducker designed the space for a teashop called Biju Bubble Tea Rooms, in London’s Soho district.
Related story: Yoobi Sushi by Gundry & Ducker
The cafe serves a style of milky tea that originated in 1980s Taiwan – often infused with fruit and poured over a layer of chewy tapioca pearls.
The London-based studio created areas of terraced seating on either side of a shop floor dotted with brightly coloured tables to create sociable environment for customers.
“Envisaged as a modern day tea room, the design emphasises the social aspects of drinking tea,” said studio co-founder Christian Ducker.
The studio forewent the typical bentwood cafe chairs in favour for a range of informal seating that creates “an internal landscape that people can occupy as they choose.”
Cork steps flank the shop floor are dotted with a selection of thick circular cushions that match the brightly coloured tabletops and paintwork.
A series of cork-lined blocks stacked against the wall create arm-rests and make-shift tables for customers on the upper levels.
Small cork stools with tubular metal legs cluster around the vibrant turquoise, pink and yellow tables overhung by a large section of industrial pipework is suspended from the striped ceiling.
“The use of natural cork in the interior refers to Biju’s use of only fresh natural ingredients, whilst the fun aspect of the drinks is reflected by the vibrant colours neon lighting and op-art graphics,” Ducker told Dezeen.
A large white counter against the rear wall of the cafe serves as a preparation area, where customers can select ingredients and watch their order being brewed.
“The idea was to display the raw materials and celebrate the theatre of the preparation of the tea,” said the whose previous projects include a tiled pizza parlour in east London.
Diagonal slices through the interior paintwork reveal sections of pale brickwork. The pattern continues onto the facade where strips of brighty-coloured metal fold off the grey painted shopfront to form signage for the cafe.
The graphics and branding for the teahouse were produced by British design studio Ico Design.
Photography is by Hufton & Crow.
Floor plan Sections