ICELAND VOLCANO COFFEE SHOP
Form must have a content, and that content
must be linked with nature.
- Alvar Aalto
2300 years ago, a crustal movement created the unique landscape of Hverfjall volcano and the Mývatn area: charming and changeable, desolate and beautiful. It is amid such an expansive area where a modest modern café is subtly hidden.
At the foot of Hverfjall, The café is located at the intersection of two winding hiking paths. The huge “rocks”, like having gone through enormous geological activities, squeeze and overlap each other, as if it is telling us what have happened here. When tourists walk on it and look into the distance, the gravel roof under their feet also turns into the continuation of the surrounding environment, deliberately zooming out the volume of the building to show respect for nature.
The facades of the building also reflect the designer’s thinking about the surroundings: the side facing the Hverfjall is closed, avoiding the visual oppression caused by the volcano. While on the other side, the transparent glass curtain wall allows an unreservedly clear view of the beauty of Mývatn. The spatial variation from closure to openness not only meets the layout needs of different rooms, but also allows the tourists to focus on the distance and quietly enjoy the creativity of nature. In contrast to the angular exterior, the interior of the building appears warmer and more traditional. The application of wood is not only a response to the local building materials, but also a sharp contrast with the desolate and bleak environment, creating a cosy and comfortable ambience.
This unique café, melting into the impressive landscape, will become another superb viewpoint on the hiking path.