Key Concept, Qahwaty

Key Concept reinterprets traditional Arabic coffee culture in a contemporary context for cafe design

Dubai-based design firm Key Concept has given a fresh spin to traditional Arabic coffee culture in a cafe project titled Qahwaty, which translates as “my cup of coffee” in English. The interior aims to reintroduce the ritual of drinking Arabic coffee in a modern and urban setting. The rustic joint located in Mirdiff 35 Mall serves single origin coffee and corresponds to its quaint surroundings.

The interior shopfront gives enough peek for the shoppers to be attracted and go inside. It then leads to a narrow corridor that’s flanked by a seating area with round marble tables, copper wall panels and wall lights on one side. This references a traditional Shaabi house, where you first enter a narrow hallway which leads to the main reception area of the house.

An arched green ceiling on the hallway creates a more intimate feel and strengthens the element of surprise at the coffee bar area. This eventually opens up to the main space which is the majlis, fitted out in an L-shaped turquoise seating area with small wooden tables.

Made out of exposed concrete hollow blocks, a polished concrete counter, and a slab of exotic white and light green marble with a tinge of pink, the coffee bar serves as the core of the space.

All the walls are finished with concrete panels that add to its urban industrial setting. At the centre of the majlis is a custom made copper tube chandelier that becomes the feature object in the space.

Read DesignMENA’s report on the award-winning interior of Menagerie restaurant by Binchy and Binchy Architecture and Design firm