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Hookah Lounge Satelite

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A competition for their new venue was organized and we were invited to participate. The competition brief specified that the interiors had to be conceived in a Modern Arabic Style. We had never gone into an interior design project with a predetermined style in mind. The problem with style is that it focuses on the visual recognition of a repetitive perceptible pattern. Innovation is restricted to the reinterpretation of a limited number of variables and architecture is reduced to an aesthetic judgment. Unfortunately, in Mexico architecture has been dominated for decades by a search for a true “Mexican Contemporary Style”. But this problem doesn’t seem to apply only to Mexico: contemporary international architecture seems to be monopolized by the overarching pursuit of a unique and unprecedented style.

Curiously enough, and to our real surprise, we won the competition! In the process of developing the construction plans, an acquaintance of our clients convinced them that the style of their new restaurant would not work in Satélite. He argued that this part of the city had always been dominated
by a more 70’s disco feel. Our clients requested we make these changes. We were quite confused by the outcome but they really loved it. A month before starting construction we were asked to fuse the two styles because they felt the essence of their brand had been diluted and become unrecognizable. Again we agreed. Why shouldn’t we? When architecture is reduced to an aesthetic judgment, all subjective arguments are valid.

The end result was a strange and eclectic orgy of visual extravagance. What kept us motivated was the social ambition it sought to accomplish. We could only wait and see.

Architectural Design: BNKR Arquitectura
Partners: Esteban Suarez (Founding Partner) and Sebastian Suarez
Project leader: Adrián Aguilar & Javier González
Project Team: Mario Gottfried, Adrián Aguilar, José Alberto Rodríguez, Javier González, Óscar Flores, David Sánchez & Héctor Hernández
Collaborators: Jorge Arteaga, Zaida Montañana &Santiago Becerra
Electrical installations: Eledé
Lighting: Noriega Iluminadores
Construction: Factor Eficiencia

Project Size: 553 m2
Status: Completed

Photography: Fabiola Menchelli & Zaida Montañana
Location: Satélite, Estado de México, Mexico
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