Projects

Roma Beer Company - Rome

Shabby chic: a stylish beer bar in the centre of Rome

An original renovation project in a historic building close to the Milvian Bridge combines echoes of the past with post-industrial atmospheres
Author
Elena Pasoli
Photos
Angelo Pedicini
Architect
P.Fantozzi, C.Sgandurra, M.Vetrani - Studio 3PuntiArchitettura
Surfaces
TONALITE
Year of completion
2013

From Constantine’s dream of the cross on the eve of the decisive battle against Maxentius to the mountains of padlocks that lovers have been affixing here since the Italian romantic comedy “I want you”, the Ponte Milvio – or Milvian Bridge – has always been one of Rome’s most historic and evocative locations. It is therefore hardly a surprise that it has become the hub of one of the capital’s most popular nightlife districts, packed with fashionable bars that successfully wed tradition with new design.
One of the most interesting – and certainly the most visually striking – of the area’s new entries opened its doors in Piazzale di Ponte Milvio in September 2013, drawing considerable attention within just a few weeks not only for its extraordinary array of more than a hundred brands of draft and bottled craft beer from all over the world but also for its stunning architectural design. Roma Beer Company sports revisited post-industrial décor created by 3Punti Architettura, in which every detail stands out for its originality and the overall spatial composition and combinations of materials are used to create a pleasant environment with strong visual and emotional appeal.
“The project used the juxtaposition of opposing elements to create a welcoming yet visually surprising space,” explained the architects. Located in the remodelled interior of a historic building and featuring the latest energy-saving solutions, the beer bar stands out for its bare brick vaulted ceilings above interiors with soft colours and materials evoking past times: lamps from old ships combined with newly manufactured industrial elements, burnished steel and reconditioned construction site pilings for the beer and kitchen counters, tables, stools and chairs sporting a shabby chic decor, minimalist interiors set against the backdrop of an astonishing illuminated giant wall lined entirely with row after row of beers of all types and brands.
But the aspect of the project where creativity really came into its own was the floor covering, consisting of a unique combination of oak planks, concrete and matt hexagonal tiles chosen in intense, dusty colours, a palette that ranges from ivory to grape and including various shades of grey. The tiles, Esagona 17.1X15 cm single-fired porcelain from the Examatt collection by Tonalite, are so refined, unique and evocative as to become almost the centrepiece of the project. A conceptual reference to the historical tiles used in Roman interiors, they appear to fray at the edges of the floors and extend up the walls of the open kitchen to form an unexpected surface covering. They are a splendid example of compositional synecdoche, where a part applies to the whole and a detail effectively sums up the vivacity and sophistication of the entire project.

Tiles
Tonalite, Examatt
Type
porcelain stoneware
Sizes
17,1x15 cm (esagona)
Colours
grigio medio, sand, avorio, mosto
Technical characteristics
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): 0,5%
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): conforme
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): conforme
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): conforme
Modulus of rupture and breaking strength (ISO 10545-4): 60,3 N/mm2
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): R9
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): conforme
Crazing resistance (ISO 10545-11): conforme
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): conforme
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