Provided: Architecture + General Contracting
Location: Boulder, CO
Completed: Summer 2016
Alpine Modern is a Boulder-based company born from a passion for modern design, the mountains, architecture, and community. In early 2016, tres birds was hired to design the interior architecture for their newest space: a 1,200 square foot shop and coffee bar in downtown Boulder.
The shop is part of a larger complex and backs to a 1,200 square foot breezeway through which tenants and guests access the upstairs units. With the developer’s approval, tres birds placed the coffee bar at the rear of the shop and opened the wall dividing Alpine Modern from the communal corridor—allowing access from both entry points, reducing congestion in the store, and breathing life into the shared throughway. For security during off-hours, tres birds designed a herringbone patterned bifolding door that cantilevers up to reveal the coffee bar during open-hours.
In line with Alpine Modern’s reverence for the outdoors, several design elements serve as subtle nods to Boulder’s mountain setting. The door handle at the front was made from a found branch, cast in bronze. The central display table was designed from a fallen Boulder cottonwood tree, pieced together to highlight the raw edge, and perched atop a collection of triangular brass rod legs to create a floating effect. The backsplash in the coffee shop is made from variant hues of green glass tile, arranged in a herringbone pattern to resemble fir trees ascending the mountain peaks.
Functionally, the space was designed to enhance simplicity and flow within the retail environment. Black slate tile flooring laid in a herringbone pattern gently guides guests through the space. Thoughtfully integrated shelving, storage, and drawers allow for a clean, modern look while providing space for additional inventory directly proximal to each object on display.
The shop is bright and inviting, infused with the rich gold tones of lightly finished douglas fir wood details. It provides a welcome respite for all those city-dwellers with one eye forever turned towards the mountains.