Serpentine Cafe, Hyde Park
Mizzi Studio were thrilled to have been awarded the prestigious commission to create a fleet of kiosks across fourteen sites within London’s Royal Parks, London. The fleet – which has been designed for the Colicci brand – will include a landmark kiosk near the Serpentine lake, sheltered by a head-turning brass canopy.
The landmark Serpentine Kiosk – which is sited across from the annual Serpentine pavilion site, with views towards the picturesque Serpentine Lake in one direction, and the Princess Diana memorial to another – is a dramatic and sinuous structure, which creates a bold and immediate statement with its sculptural form. The building coexists with its environment as a semi-transparent open space that blurs boundaries between indoors and outdoors. It has been designed to be both utilitarian and artful, and to be built for longevity and constant use.
Our design took inspiration from the Serpentine lake itself – its name and meandering shape – and infused those influences with new levels of movement and texture. We created heightened drama by integrating the sweeping motion of a stingray’s flight into the canopy. The form of the roof was designed to reach its climactic point while hovering above the entrance – as though a zoomorphic cape had been pulled through the air over
the entire cafe.
The architectural context for our kiosk is one of international excellence – people from all over the world continue to visit this corner of the park, year after year, as a ongoing source of inspiration. The ZHA Sacker Gallery and the legacy of the Serpentine Pavilions naturally informed our design process in that we aimed to create equally experiential architecture, providing users with an iconic and memorable experience. Our kiosk is dramatically sculptural but also captivating at a micro-level, with texture and colour playing an important role in delivering the canopy’s full impact. Ultimately, our approach has been to create a structure that is both utilitarian and artful – to design something that has as much impact as its contextual predecessors, but that is built to last. We amplified and articulated an amphibious sweeping motion into a balanced canopy, taking inspiration from the stingray’s flight. We returned to the serpent/snake – specifically the python – for its reptilian texture, and echoed this tactile quality throughout the underbelly of the canopy.
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