In this new venue in Moscow commissioned by restaurateuse Kira Baybakova to the New York-based studio Asthetique, the symmetries already start with the letter Y of the mysterious name, and then shift – though not too expansively – into the concept of the spaces. About 550 square meters for 200 place settings and two kitchens, organized on two levels, are located in the base of a new residential building in the central Chamovniki district, with high, luminous volumes that grab light from a series of full-height windows with square metal partitions. On the ground floor the straight lines extend from the windows to the furnished space in a long white marble counter that leaves the kitchen on view, and a double row of tables with round or square tops, as well as a full-height service cabinet with a metal structure. The lines are curved, by contrast, in the rounded stylized forms of the chandeliers, resembling birdcages, or in the multiple arches that add dynamism to the space, like the relief profiles of the wood paneling, the decorations over the counter, the openings in the walls, the lamps in gilded metal with opaque boules. The seating varies – from different European companies like &Tradition, Kristalia, Mattiazzi, Saba – in a selection of gray, pink, green, salmon and blue pastel tones, aptly combined with the pale warmth of wood and the shiny finishes of metals.
The reassuring language of arches, circles and spheres also continues on the upper level – with internal glass dividers, lamps in gilded metal and mirrors – featuring a palette of slightly darker tones for the coverings of ceilings, walls and floors. The ‘hardness’ of the chosen materials – metal, marble, plaster and concrete – is softened by pervasive lighting, the pastel color range, the velvet upholstery and botanical motifs, both depicted in the murals and real in the case of the green plants scattered throughout the functional areas.
Halfway between the playful atmosphere of a set by Wes Anderson and an aesthetic composite of the 1970s, without overlooking the curves and metals of Art Deco origin, the Y offers a sequence of zones and functions, from the cafe on the ground level to the room for private events on the upper floor, the informal diner to the more sophisticated restaurant, the cocktail bar to the play area for kids, to welcome many representatives of Moscow’s Generation Y throughout the day, into a place that is named after them.