Design of Heinz Beck’s New Restaurant in CityLife
A new generation material with a mineral look: HI-MACS®, in the Volcanics finish, was used for the spectacular counter at “Attimi,” the new casual dining restaurant from Michelin-starred chef Heinz Beck in Milan’s CityLife district.
“We do not remember days, we remember moments”, wrote legendary Italian author Cesare Pavese. Architect Fabio Novembre used these words as the basis for his new restaurant, “Attimi by Heinz Beck”. Attimi, which means “moments” in Italian, is designed for bistro dining at any moment of the day, from breakfast to dinner. Located in CityLife, a redeveloped district in the heart of new Milan, Attimi offers authentic and unique gourmet experiences conceived by Heinz Beck, a German-born chef and recipient of three Michelin stars, and has already become a benchmark for food and wine in the Lombard capital. The premises were created thanks to a collaboration between Beck & Maltese Consulting and Chef Express (Cremonini Group).
The casual dining restaurant – a forest of chairs, sofas, stools, and seats with various table configurations – is arranged around columns that separate the space into different areas: Cocktail, Dining, Aperitive, and Bistro. The furnishings come in a wide range of neutral colours, predominantly greys, with some splashes of brighter colours. The centre of attention is unquestionably the large, eye-catching counter. Although it appears to be mineral agglomerate, in reality it was created using HI-MACS® solid surface in the Frosty finish, part of the Volcanics collection. Made from minerals, natural pigment and acrylic, unlike stone
HI-MACS® can be thermoformed into any shape, cut in the same way as wood, and worked so as to eliminate any visible seams and possible imperfections or damage that may occur over time. Moreover, HI-MACS® is completely non-porous, making it easy to clean and resistant to dirt and shocks; in short, perfect for direct contact with food and people. The irregular texture of the Volcanics colours – part of a catalogue of around 100 finishes in total – mimics the texture of mineral agglomerates and stone chippings, giving the surface a natural appearance.
The main counter looks as if it were excavated from the wall, with three levels folded on top of one another, crowned by another level projecting out over the whole that features a three-dimensional version of the restaurant’s backlit logo, in a stunning play between volume and perspective. It’s an impressive solution in an urban style that recalls the design of Piazza Tre Torri, the square that is the architectural and shopping focal point of “New Milan.”
In presenting his latest work, architect Novembre affirmed: “I think the not-accidental etymological coincidence between ‘present’ as a time and ‘present’ as a gift is a starting point for any design research. Here we see moments not as fleeting minutes of life, but intense experiences that we need to know how to grab onto and that remain stamped on our minds.”
Using this line of thinking, Fabio Novembre, has created a meeting place with an unmistakable style, perfect for enjoying both a series of moments of culinary pleasure as well as very short moments, “just long enough for a coffee.” It’s a space open to everyone, so is very democratic, but at the same time refined and sophisticated. A place for a moment to be sociable, a moment to relax, a moment of pleasure, and even a moment for design, thanks to HI-MACS®.