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Graham's 1890 Lodge / Global design
Caves 1890 Graham's
2011/2013 – Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal

Client: Symington Family Estates
Design director: Nuno Gusmão
Designers: Giuseppe Greco, Joana Proserpio
Photos: FG+SG

This global design project to renew and upgrade the Graham's 1890 Lodge consisted in the “reinvention” of the whole space of this 193 years old Wine Cellar in Oporto in order to improve the visitors' experience in this unique place. The project comprises the design of the lobby, auditorium, exhibition room, tasting room, vintage room, shop, restaurant and wine bar. Some of this spaces didn’t exist before, and some were renovated, all part of the new visitors tour. This global renovation consisted in the design of the interiors, customized furniture, a new signage system and environmental graphics, and also a permanent exhibition. In an effort to have a timeless intervention, the overall design concept was all about the idea of creating objects, spaces and graphics that seem to be there from the beginning, and that will remain that way forever (avoiding the sensation of “fake vintage environments” and creating an overall feeling of "historical prestige"). The materials and colors used were intentionally restricted to a minimum (wood and iron, black, white, and the natural wood color). The furniture was built with old craftsmanship technics (no plywoods, no coverings, just solid wood), and was designed to be adjusted to the scale of each space. The length of some equipments are bigger than usual in an effort to "adapt" their dimensions to the spaces, creating a humanized scale in this "warehouse spaces” (an example: the exhibition room table is 15 meters long with just 6 legs). The whole visual communication objective was to continue this idea “something historical but somehow timeless” by using typefaces and layouts that could suggest this feeling, and by choosing everlasting technical solutions, such wood engraving, metal lettering and a new system called "wallprint" which allows us to literally "tattoo" texts and images directly on the walls.