Cajuí Restaurant São Paulo, Brazil

Cajuí Restaurant, Vila Madalena restaurant, São Paulo building design, Brazilian architecture photos

Cajuí Restaurant in São Paulo

24 October 2023

Design: VAGA Arquitetura

Location: Vila Madalena, São Paulo, SP

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil
Photos by Pedro Napolitano Prata

Cajuí Restaurant, Brazil

Located in the Vila Madalena neighborhood in São Paulo, the project for the Cajuí Restaurant, signed by VAGA Arquitetura, was inspired by the restaurant’s culinary concepts – which include the use of natural ingredients in the dishes and the premise of being accessible to all – and the pre-existing building.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

The restaurant’s name refers to the small fruit of the cashew family, native to the Brazilian Cerrado – the cajuí – and was chosen to represent one of the causes supported by the owners: the warning against deforestation in this biome so rich in biodiversity. The theme also inspired the development of the new architectural concept for the space.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

During the architectural design process, the interaction between light and color was emphasized, so that the incidence of natural lighting on the materials and tones used in the space would evoke the atmosphere of the Brazilian Cerrado.

The relationship established between architecture and nature was safeguarded throughout the creation process, being taken into account in all design decisions, even in the conception of the pendant lamps, produced in conjunction with a ceramist, which function as hanging vases.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

The steep slope from the access to the property to the back of the lot and the darkness of the narrow building, which was practically covered in its entirety, indicated the inaugural physical challenges for the implementation of the architectural concept.

Initially, with the intention of following the client’s wishes to avoid major interventions in the property, the space was divided into two zones by means of a low volume containing a toilet and the bar. With the aim of being an inclusive environment accessible to all, a platform lift was installed from the level of the sidewalk to the first plateau, which guarantees accessibility to the lower lounge, bar and toilet.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

The stairs were concentrated in strategic places to overcome the unevenness gradually, reducing the pre-existing plateaus and providing a more fluid and intuitive circulation.

The precarious situation of the previous building, made of masonry surrounded by temporary structures, called for a strategic solution. For this reason, the architects concentrated the main modifications on new auxiliary wooden structures, attached to the pre-existing building.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

These elements serve as a shelter, while at the same time transmitting natural light, allowing interaction between the interior and exterior.

A translucent roof tile lets in natural light which, filtered through the organic jute lining, directly influences the color of the room at different times of the day.

The red-pigmented burnt cement floor, as well as being reminiscent of the Cerrado soil, works in harmony with the natural light that enters the room. The white walls absorb the earthy colors used in the project and help convey the desired atmosphere.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

During the work, the firm ensured that a large part of the waste generated was reused on site, whether for the decking of the waiting area, for filling the floors or for the bamboo lining at the back of the restaurant.

At the back, next to the staff area, large garden were built to grow the main ingredients used in the restaurant’s daily routine.

The landscaping complements the architectural design in all the rooms, as an element that goes beyond decorative, being functional and seen as an integral part of the restaurant’s day-to-day operation.

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil – Building Information

Architecture: VAGA – www.vaga.arq.br
Management/Coordination: VAGA
Authors: Fernando O’Leary, Pedro Domingues and Pedro Faria
Collaborators: Cauê Marins, Gabriela Inomata and Tali Liberman
Landscaping: Planta Plena
Client: Cajuí Brasil
Location: Vila Madalena, São Paulo – SP, Brazil
Project Year: 2019
Year of Construction Completion: 2020
Area: 210 m²

Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazil

Photos: Pedro Napolitano Prata

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Cajuí Restaurant, São Paulo, Brazilimages / information received 241023

Location: São Paulo, SP, Brasil

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