The eclectic feel of downtown Toronto meets the classic vibrancy of Barcelona and bullhorn motifs: BarsaTaberna is the Spanish Tapas-style restaurant with an Italian flair in the floor. Designed and completed by multidisciplinary studio, +tongtong, Italian company Ceramiche Refin was chosen to design and manufacture the ceramic tiles for one portion of the intimate Barcelona-inspired restaurant with hints of Gaudi’s city from ceiling to floor. Located in a historical building across from the famous St. Lawrence Market in Toronto, the newly opened BarsaTabernais appreciated by tourists and city goers alike, not only for its tapas-style menu, but also for its modernist architecture and sleek and edgy design accents.
CeramicheRefin’s tile collection, Frame Majolica Random, was chosen for the intimate, grotto-style dining area that can be found after passing from the edgy bar area through the rugged, brick-laid archways. The Majolica Random variation of the Frame collection provides a bold, decorative surface, reminiscent of a Mediterranean theme, the ideal fit for the tight, dark, windowless dining space featuring low ceilings and rustic wooden beams.
“Majolica Random is the product of DesignTaleStudio, our in-house technical and aesthetic research team,” explains the Refin team. “It is a modern take on traditional patterns from the art noveau and gothic periods and represents culture, innovation and creativity.It was the ideal match for the taste of European style that the designers were trying to capture with BarsaTaberna.”
The Gaudi-inspired theme of BarsaTaberna, that also captures the chaos and passion of the running of the bulls, is a little piece of history in and of itself. Located in a historical building, and therefore limited in its reconstruction, the windows, maisonstone walls and main door had to remain preserved, maintaining the building’s historical roots.
The Refin tiles were precisely laid in BarsaTaberna in a way that draws attention to the nonlinear nature of the space. In fact, the mason wall separating the bar from the dining area is angled, a stylistic characteristic seen in older, Medieval cities in Europe. The light source used to compliment the Majolica tiles emanates from a rear-lit mural, a collaboration between graffiti artist Pascal Paquette and designer John Tong.
Refin has established itself as a leader in the tiles sector with a highly developed graphics system that broadens the horizons for tile design. Utilizing every aspect of nature, culture and human surroundings, they develop unique interior and exterior floor and wall tiles that tell a story. The combination of using ultra resistant Grès Porcelain tiles together with their avant-garde graphics and a commitment to research and innovation, CeramicheRefin is the epitome of a high quality product Made in Italy. Photo credit: courtesy of +tongtong