The horizon across the lake
Beauty is in the air, or to be more precise, in the landscape. Described as the «jewel of islands and of peninsulas» by Catullus, the municipality of Sirmione is home to the restaurant La Casa dei Pescatori. Located in the narrowest section of the strip of land that extends into Lake Garda and divides the southern shore in two, the restaurant offers a 360-degree panoramic view of the lake. Known for its traditional local cuisine specialising in fresh lake fish combined with a creative touch of modernity, the restaurant was in need of makeover to enable guests to fully enjoy the famous lake view while savouring its culinary offerings. Accessible by road but also offering private mooring for boats coming from Lake Garda, the restaurant has a pleasant interior with a cosy, elegant atmosphere and a large lakeside garden where guests can eat out during the summer. The restaurant’s roof terrace was beginning to show the first signs of age. «We needed to think about modernising the restaurant and giving it a more attractive look in line with the architecture of rival establishments in the area, while at the same time improving the functionality of the terrace so as to offer customers an even more enjoyable experience,» explained Azzali Architecture, the practice commissioned by the owner to develop the project. The concept was developed in close cooperation with the client, and «had to meet a series of constraints due to the landscape protection regulations imposed by the municipality of Sirmione for the lakeside area», say the architects. A low-impact solution was needed to replace the existing structures including a wooden slatted floor and an iron railing with a retro flavour. To maintain a sense of continuity with the past, the Sirmione-based practice chose to pave the terrace with tiles from Panaria Ceramica’s Nuance collection, an extremely durable wood-effect porcelain chosen in the colour Tabac. The 20×120 cm tiles echo the old parquet, recreating the strong veins, warm shades and colours of oak on the restaurant’s rooftop terrace, now used as a solarium. The natural aesthetic emphasises the landscape, while a glass parapet offers an uninterrupted view of the horizon. A 6×4 metre pergola intended for use as a lounge bar area was installed adjacent to the building. To support its own weight and that of the groups of people likely to gather there in the evenings, structural work was needed. «Steel girders were installed on the ground floor to support the lateral beams, while the central section of the terrace was reinforced,» explained the architects. The restaurant owners already have plans to further develop the outdoor spaces to allow guests to fully appreciate the beauty of Lake Garda.