João Quintela and Tim Simon’s innovative café for a climbing gym in Lisbon invites visitors to climb up and over it! The design team collaborated for the Vertigo Pavilion, creating a multi-use timber structure that houses both the café and reception area. The slatted red pavilion fits like a booth within the vast warehouse that the Vertigo Climbing Center occupies.
Quintela and Simon wanted to create a multi-use space that echoed the vigor of the Vertigo Climbing Center, which itself is an adaptive reuse project which revamped a disused warehouse. The design duo decided to expand on the climbing gym itself, creating a pavilion that separates the center’s café, but can also be utilized like the rest of the facility. Inside, the red timber grid structure houses a small café area that is separate from the gym area with a cast concrete floor. The planks of wood on the inner walls are flat, creating a continuous surface that creates a more uniform, contained space for the café.
On the exterior of the pavilion, the planks are varied, inviting guests to climb up and over as they would in the gym. Quintela and Simon even created a mezzanine platform for relaxing, accessible only by climbing the façade.
The pavilion sits in the existing warehouse space independently, acting as a modern structure without obstructing the original architecture. To pay tribute to the site’s history, the pavilion was painted red, to accent the shipping cranes and containers in the area.