Designed for the Zambon pharmaceutical group by Vittorio Grassi Architetto & Partners, the Koà, Kitchen Open Air restaurant is part of the Open Zone Centre of Excellence for Innovation and Technological Research in Milan’s Parco Nord in the Commune of Bresso. Lightness, transparency and integration with the surrounding parkland are among the guiding principles of the building’s design - a square on a single elevated level. Divided internally into four areas (dining room, bathrooms, food preparation and storage area, and food service counters), the restaurant can accommodate up to 220 people. It is open to the exterior on three sides, with extra-clear double-glazed facades that offer views of the surrounding park. Thin steel frames minimize the visual impact of the structure, creating a feeling of lightness and visual permeability. The interior finishes are Active Clean Air & Antibacterial CeramicTM, manufactured by Fiandre, and reflect the underlying design emphasis of the entire project. Efforts to harmoniously integrate the restaurant into its environment extend to all the furnishings and materials used. From this perspective, the use of the Silver Ground Active tiles contributes to protecting the environment through their photocatalytic properties, which make them able to break down the main pollutants present in the air as well as several bacteria that are dangerous to humans. The dining room and bar open onto timber decks overlooking the park. Tables are available for use during good weather, with shade is provided by the cantilevered roof. The 3.5 metre overhang also reduces direct sunlight on the facades, improving comfort levels inside. The transparent north-eastern and western façades contrast with the southern façade, which consists, like the top band of the design, of a double skin covered with white opal glass. While the double skin assists in heat storage during winter and acts as a barrier to direct sunlight during summer, the opal glass provides privacy for the kitchen.
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