by STIRworldJul 17, 2021
For most people, the coffee ritual in the morning is sacrosanct. And, if a fresh-ground exotic brew is served in an inspiring barista, even better. The DOT Coffee Station in Kyiv, Ukraine, designed by YOD Group is perhaps an unconventional yet fitting example. As passersby enter through glass sliding doors, they're welcomed inside an interior which is almost like a manifestation of modern city life—rugged stone walls meet white mosaic floor tiles, and pixel art of pop culture along with community benches paint a picture of familiarity yet intrigue.
While the coffee shop emerges as a convenient stopover for hurried customers, its USP truly lies in its quirky design—right from the entrance staircase, to the art on the walls; the large, visible spaces are enhanced with small mosaic tiles that look like pixels and make the interiors seem like a graphic, digital arena. The foot-on-face pop art greets customers, creating a light-hearted yet relatable moment—one a regular metropolis inhabitant would possibly feel several times a day during the daily rigmarole. "The mosaic on the wall reflects the cafe’s pixel theme. The pixel is the starting point of every image. We deliberately chose not to convey any hidden message in this picture, but create something weird, sincere and universal," shares Dmytro Bonesko, co-founder and art director, YOD Group. Right next to it, a narrow screen with slow scrolling text is designed in a way that it denotes the adrenaline moving through the veins of the people who just got a double espresso. “The board is a standard LED panel, commonly seen in currency exchange signboards across the city streets. We brought a popular element of the city landscape inside the cafe to emphasise the connection between the inside and outside. The screen twinkles and changes to attract attention. The scrolling text is programmed and changed according to any special occasion like holidays, events, and special offers," adds Bonesko. Every guest in DOT is imagined like a pixel in the Kyiv puzzle, filled with energy, emotion, and plenty of coffee.
The location of the cafe plays a key role in its design as well. Situated in central Kyiv on the street that borders Bessarabska Square, the vibe, energy and the fast pace of the city almost wafts inside the café as well, giving it its identity and character. Patrons enter the premises yet don’t feel closed inside it—the large glass doors ensure uninterrupted visuals between the indoors and outdoors.
On the ground floor are two chairs and a bench, tucked inside a niche where a few guests can settle down. Another seating is along the building façade next to the café. The timber used to create these was sourced from old beams that were once part of a barn. "It is a time-proven material that tells its own story and works as a contrast with the cold stainless steel elements like the small round tables and shelves. Other than that, the main materials we've used are the space's original old bricks, and mosaic tiles by Cinca on the walls, floor, and stairs. We designed a few large-scale lamps for the counter. Also, we have LED lines behind shelves and in the niche above the seating place," shares Bonesko.
On a busy street in the heart of the city, frequented by professionals, students and vendors, it’s not easy to create a space that begs a double take, and coaxes you to come inside. The DOT Coffee Station and its design, in that sense, is a true win.
Name of the project: The DOT Coffee Station
Location: Kyiv, Ukraine
Architect: Dmytro Bonesko, YOD Group
Area: 30.6 sqm
Year of completion: 2021