Cucurico represents a restoration and refurbishment project for a churrasqueira (Portuguese chicken grill-house) covering an area of 230m2, located in the LxFactory complex in Alcântara, Lisbon. The area is located within a commercial area, characterised by its industrial past, and spans a broad space with its roofing in iron and glass held up by the metallic pillars that punctuate the space according to a strict geometry.
The brand set the framework of a young and urban language able to serve to leverage an informal and welcoming ambience. Within this scope, this sought to reinterpret the traditional churrasqueira concept as a shared imaginary of Portuguese culture while transplanting it into contemporary times through the choice of materials, colours and furniture design.
The departure point for the project was establishing a unique volume able to, through its centralised location, respect the structure of the space and physically coupled to one of the existing walls. This positioning enables not only the total reading of the arches featuring along the opposite wall but also the establishing of two distinctive areas for clients.
The opaque block gathers together not only all of the technical areas but also its infrastructural equipments. At one end, there is an open serving section with the chicken grill and the service zone taking on the main role in the dynamic of the space given that they are visible from any point in the restaurant. This volume is finished in metallic sheeting thereby forming a contrast with the walls with their exposed concrete over which a green wainscot was superimposed to unify the space. The singular character of the arches received emphasis through the introducing of two flower boxes and the design of the neon lights that instill an artistic and photogenic nature on the surrounding space.
As regards the positioning of the bar, the option involved a lateral solution that thus composes the main façade of the restaurant. The alignment with each entranceway also deploys the two client service points that are shaped in triangular format modules providing a closer experience with the client and replacing the traditional serving counter.
The distribution of the dining spaces enables different appropriation typologies: alongside the main façade, the design features long, wooden tables and benches in order to stimulate socialisation and sharing; with tall tables placed in the niches under the existing arches and in the windows of the rear façade, thereby enabling the relationship with the exterior; in the main nave, however, low, two-person tables were installed so as to raise the level of flexibility; outside, the terrace design strives to ensure the continuity of the inner space both through the colour scheme and the furniture purpose designed for the restaurant.
The project therefore aimed to, through the utilisation of core materials such as iron, concrete and wood, nurture an “authentic” space with a stark but friendly character shaped by the heavy industrial influence of its surroundings.