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Sweet tooth confectioneries/Corner Store is a recently opened family-friendly patisserie and dessert bar / coffee lounge in Port Harcourt, situated within a fairly unique structure designed by Farouk Ghazal and Folabi Dania of Seigf Metropolitan Services.
The structure was previously a distressed, semi-detached 3 bedroom bungalow located on a sizable lot of 350 sq m, which offered a good enough location and size for their client’s vision.
EXISTING 3 BED BUNGALOW
As such the brief was to renovate the existing structure to accommodate a unique space where children could enjoy sweets and candy while playing and interacting while their parents could also be able to relax with some coffee while keeping an eye on their kids. This idea is what ultimately led to the Corner Store coffee lounge as a separate yet seamless offering within the development.
Work on the site started back in June 2015, with the civil works carried out in phases. One of the major challenges faced during the process was the drainage as the roads enclosing the site were almost a meter higher than the site itself, which would invariably lead to flooding. To settle this, sumps were introduced at two different points on the site to the main drain by the road.
The existing structure was extended to cater to the required spaces, including a food-court, candy display area, self-serve yogurt area, a lounge, changing rooms, a kitchen, offices, stores and rest rooms as well as defined internal and external play areas for the kids.
The design of the structure is simple enough as it introduces contemporary clean lines via parapet walls to hide the roof, and allows for adequate natural light through large windows. However, what is most notable about the building would have to be the facade.
A brightly coloured, conspicous facade makes use of what appears to be timber siding, alubond panels and coloured aluminium strips (in the colours of the brand) to capture attention and make an impression. Its a fine compliment to the geometry of the renovated structure, and does well to identify both the building and the brand.
The public interior spaces also make use of brand colours and interesting forms to create engaging spaces. For instance, the candy display tunnel makes use of wood, perspex boards and ambient lighting to create a rainbow like effect thats a nod to candy and the aesthetic therein.
The adjacent food court, is finished with black and white floor tiles, and features a headroom of about 4m with fixed clerestory windows that help keep the space bright.
CANDY DISPLAY TUNNEL
INTERNAL/EXTERNAL PLAY AREAS
The coffee lounge offers a more restrained colour palette with shades of cream and brown and wood accents that also nod to the nature of the product itself. Its tone and ambiance clearly signifies its intent for a more mature audience.
For a city like Port-Harcourt, that isn’t particularly popular for contemporary style architecture, this is a welcome development that would do well to inspire designers and architects in the region, to think different and try different.