This flagship cafe for a new development highlights the interplay of a limited palette of finely crafted elements within a heritage shell. As stage one of an adaptive re-use development project converting characterful, brick buildings into commercial propositions around a new arcade, Tosca’s role is to establish the development's intent, vision and commitment to quality.

This cafe is a nod to the traditions of heritage shop fronts, with elegantly resolved joinery and glazing with large bi-fold service windows for walkup customers to order, linger and wait in the arcade.

Overall, the aesthetic qualities are derived from an assemblage of high quality natural elements – brass, fluted cedar, and panelled oak walls that curve into arches and contrast with the characterful terrazzo stone counter. As an anchoring feature, the terrazzo counter complements the predominantly blush-pink tones of the brand, which are also expressed in the velvet upholstery of the built-in banquette, and in other seating elements.

Honeyed and light, Tosca is unashamedly feminine aesthetic. Its warmth and familiarity accentuated by the beautifully chosen crockery and cookware, and, of course, the charm and hospitality of those who work there.

Photography by Sam Hartnett

2021 Best Awards - Bronze, Hospitality category