n.o.t. specialty coffee x ehonia @ hysan place

“All aboard. Hop on this sophisticated train to Brazil and embark on a tasteful journey to delicate coffee.”

Like all other branches we have designed for N.O.T., we emphasized the close connection that the design must assimilate with its surroundings. We made sure each space reflects our creative philosophy of imbuing a distinctive narrative of its own. Located in the wide and open lobby inside a Grade A office building in Causeway Bay, this third outlet of the specialty coffee brand was built from scratch due to the fact that there was not a physical store to start with.

Characterized by a minimalist fashion, the lobby is furnished with marble floors and dark wooden walls, exuding a sense of elegance. We had hoped to approach with a hipster aesthetic, a scheme fairly popular in café design recently, but it does not really fit in the serene ambience of the existing lobby. Instead, we opted for a timeless sensibility that reflects the taste of the office workers. There is also a soaring glass curtain wall in the lobby through which the workers are greeted with a distant scenery that transports them to crave for an imaginative journey to unwind and relax as they come and go.

We decided to curate a trip to remember: a train that takes you to Brazil and revels in the opulence of old-world charm, and a journey that leads you to some of the finest coffee around the globe. Taking inspiration from vintage trains and reinterpreting that retro flair with a contemporary spin, we emphasized on details and meticulously interweaved a sculptural metal top to frame the designated area, as well as exquisite lightings, skylights, and intercrossing metal accents underneath the bar area. Freshly brewed coffee aside, guests will be served with hearty pasta and salad among other delightful gourmets presented by Ehonia. While N.O.T. and Ehonia are two entirely independent businesses, we hoped to merge the two brands into one train compartment harmoniously through a complementary design approach – utilizing red and blue respectively as each of their theme colour, as well as a decorative scheme featuring black exterior with gold interior, and vice versa – that is similar enough to showcase the seamless coordination in between yet unique enough to differentiate the two culinary experiences. Join us on the search for sensory pleasure and slowly discover the beauty of life while sipping a delicate coffee, enjoying a refreshing meal in such sublime setting.

Completed in 2019.