Award-winning Mizzi Studio is delighted to announce that its plans for a landmark building opposite the Serpentine Gallery, complete with head-turning brass canopy, have been approved by Westminster Council. In addition, planning permission has been granted for another nine free-standing sculptural kiosks across London’s Royal Parks.
In the largest mobilisation The Royal Parks has seen in 14 years, the studio – along with Colicci, the artisan family brand of cafés, kiosks and restaurants – won a competitive bid that will see these designs revolutionise central London’s open spaces.
For this high-profile commission, London-based architect Jonathan Mizzi and his team will deliver a new building near the Serpentine lake that will house a café, as well as nine “handcrafted” kiosks to replace ageing coffee kiosks on existing sites across Hyde Park, Green Park and St James’s Park, this autumn.
The new Serpentine building – which is sited a stone’s throw from Zaha Hadid’s Serpentine Sackler Gallery, with views towards the picturesque Serpentine Lake in one direction and the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain in the other – is at once dramatic, swooping and sinuous. Inspired by both the lake itself and a stingray’s flight, this stunning design will give the appearance of a giant golden cape being pulled through the air over the entire structure.
With installation set to commence on 26th September, and anticipated to take three months, the new building and sculptural kiosks will enhance the visitor experience, making a refreshment stop at one of these beautiful structures an integral part of a journey through the parks.
The new Serpentine café, which will open its doors in December, is defined by a sculptural brass roof that playfully undulates, inviting park visitors under its textured canopy and into the glazed pavilion. The building co-exists with its environment as a semi-transparent open space that blurs boundaries between indoors and outdoors.
The freestanding kiosks are conceived as a family of individual curvaceous structures with a graceful tree-like canopy that are united in their design language. Seven of these structures will be clad in hand “steam-bent” English oak timber and two will be covered in sculpted tubular brass.
Responding to the Grade I listed landscape, Mizzi Studio has designed the new building and kiosks to sit sympathetically in their environment. All the kiosks will mirror the Colicci brand – and its artisan products – through the use of sophisticated, sustainable and warm materials.
Mizzi Studio has collaborated with Colicci on a number of projects over the past six years including the award-winning copper café at London’s Westfield Stratford shopping centre and The Pheasantry Café within Grade I Listed Bushy Park.
Together with Colicci’s Director Rob Colicci, Jonathan Mizzi, Director of Mizzi Studio, spent months exploring the parks’ heritage. Each structure is unique, tailored to the history, nuances and demographics of its respective site. For example, the striking brass horseshoe kiosk in St James’s Park – a stone’s throw from Buckingham Palace – mirrors the ornate precious metals that adorn Sir Thomas Brock’s iconic Queen Victoria Memorial.co-exists with its environment as a semi-transparent open space that blurs boundaries between indoors and outdoors.
Andrew Varnava, Catering Contract Manager at The Royal Parks, said: “We’re thrilled with Mizzi Studio’s refreshing and innovative design. The kiosks are a wonderful fit with the Parks’ unique surroundings, and are made with sustainable materials and state-of-the-art manufacturing methods, reflecting our own aim to be a leader in sustainable park management.
Added Jonathan Mizzi, “I am absolutely delighted that the plans have been approved. It is an honour to have been entrusted with such a high profile project of this size and scale. The kiosks form an important part of The Royal Parks’ heritage by serving the public with refreshments and acting as local information points. The design challenge was to create a family of functional sculptures with a goal to continuously surprise and delight while further enhancing the visitor’s experience. This is an important milestone for the studio and is central to our commitment to innovative sustainable design for the public realm.”