Am·bro·sia - /amˈbrōZH(ē)ə/ - something very pleasing to taste or smell.
The name says it all of what one could expect from this new Tea Cafe designed by Biasol, a multi-award winning Melbourne based design studio. The team delivered a compelling and consistent brand experience through their work on the interior design, product design, and branding for this new tea brand and shop in the up-and-coming area of Shenzhen, China.
From a beautifully crafted entryway to the takeaway bags and cupholders, each detail was meticulously considered to prolong customer engagement, so even after a customer departs from the physical location, they carry with them branded items that continue to promote the company.
蜜葉裡 Ambrosia is the name Biasol gave to a new tea brand and shop in an up-and-coming area of Shenzhen, China. The clients wanted an international studio to design their hospitality venue and brand and engaged Biasol to help make their mark as fashionable, modern and mindful. Wanting to share an authentic taste of tea without the use of sugar, 蜜葉裡 Ambrosia uses sensory loose-leaf teas and the finest natural honey.
蜜葉裡, meaning “honey leaf,” refers to the use of honey instead of sugar, and ambrosia, in ancient Greek myths, is the food or drink of the gods, conferring longevity or immortality. As 蜜葉裡 Ambrosia fosters health, balance and happiness, we translated these values into the design of the venue with a material and colour palette as sweet and refreshing as bubble tea.
The unique and impactful space features handcrafted techniques and a distinctive aesthetic to appeal to the modern and mindful tea drinker. The minimalist form is based on the traditional Chinese courtyard houses and architectural gateways to achieve a sense of flow, while the soft pink palette creates a calming, sensory experience.
Wooden arches with opaque glass panels frame the entry and service counter and are a contemporary nod to the traditional Chinese gateway, paifang. The long and narrow interior evokes the courtyard in historical siheyuan residences, where enclosed courtyards provide intimacy for family and friends. Rounded corners soften the feel of the long and narrow space, with a menu affixed to the wall at one end, and an upholstered banquette at the other end. The service counter is in the centre with all tea making taking place behind the scenes.
The light and feminine palette draws inspiration from pale earthy tones and timber textures. Fibonacci Stone’s “Pavlova” terrazzo on the floors, counter, tables and walls are an aggregate of sensory and calming tones with flesh, blush and salmon hues. Pendant lights above the counter are like bubbles rising to the surface, and a neon white light – “Be my best cup of tea” – reiterates the lifestyle that 蜜葉裡 Ambrosia represents. Not just another bubble tea, 蜜葉裡 Ambrosia is the best cup of bubble tea that life has to offer.
The soothing environment provides a cozy gathering space, and the Biasol team worked to ensure each element of the product design continued to portray the brand’s identity. Designed hexagonal drink coasters are showcase rounded corners and the same light, comforting hues with the brand name etched on one side and a quote written in both English and Chinese on the other side. The shape is also a nod to the brand’s use of the finest honey, where one could arranged a group of coasters together to create their own beehive.
Staff are provided with designed serving aprons in an earthy tone with the brand name etched on a soft leather panel. The darker aprons acts as the element to pull together all the lighter tones in the interiors and provides contrast using a moving subject - the staff.
Product design elements completes the full customer experience with takeaway bags, cups and cupholders to help promote the brand even after a customer leaves the physical store. The bags are in a calming blush hue, with gold embossed lettering of the brand name catching the light as customers bring the takeaway back to their office or home to enjoy.
Those who choose to enjoy a single cup of bubble tea are provided with an easy to carry single cupholder, a thoughtful and ergonomic packaging design concept to slow the warming of a cold drink.
The next time you pay a visit to Shenzhen, China, experience ‘the best cup of bubble tea’ at the beautiful Ambrosia tea cafe.