Alma is a contemporary Spanish restaurant and bar within a 1930’s heritage building in Auckland’s Britomart precinct. The brief was for all day trading, from early morning to late at night.

The proportions of the room are unusual and made more complicated by a series of structural concrete columns that interrupt the space further.

Our design evolved from the proposition of accentuating rather than trying to fight the unusual shape of the premises. We placed the back of house to the north with an open kitchen facing the three surrounding streets. This makes the process of cooking a central piece of theatre within the space.

A counter runs along the entirety of the west — east axis, utilizing its dramatic length to create a focal point for the restaurant.

The long bar is used for dining and represents almost half of the seats in the restaurant. From the bar the experience is of being within the working kitchen, complete with an open fire hearth that the menu is built around.


New Zealand Institute of Architects Auckland Architecture Award (Hospitality) 2022

New Zealand Institute of Architects / Resene Colour Award 2022