A former fire station transforms into a restaurant and nightclub in Oslo, Norway
Michaels restaurant and nightclub, which has been designed by Anna Butele’s ‘Annvil’ design offices in collaboration with ‘Studio Kaape’, has opened its doors in the Norwegian capital of Oslo. Formerly known as B&M, Michaels is a legendary place in Oslo with 20 years of history. Led by experienced chef Michael Skiri, the concept venue is located in the heart of the city in the Briskeby area, which boasts major fashion, design and food spots. It is a locale where the modern metropolis blends with the city’s industrial heritage, and it is in just such a place – a former fire station – where you will today find Michaels. The new venue is spread out among three floors of the building, with each floor having its own concept. The ground floor is functionally divided into three zones: a daily-type of restaurant, a fine-dining restaurant, and a lounge with a fireplace. The top floor is a lounge area, whereas the below-ground level contains a nightclub; each zone has its own bar. Featuring 430 square meters of space, the venue can accommodate up to 300 visitors at a time.
Given the history that the former fire station building holds within its walls, the interior design of Michaels continues the thread of the location’s industrial spirit and experiments with contrasting finishes. The space is dominated by massive industrial and unprocessed finishes primarily derived from local natural resources, such as galvanized steel, rolled metal, concrete, solid wood, and marble from Norwegian stone quarries. The ground floor’s fireplace and pizza oven look like a massive forge ensconced by rolled metal casing. It’s interesting to note that the client explicitly requested that all furniture have durable and shock-resistant surfaces that can withstand several people standing or dancing on them at the same time, which is why the central bar tables and benches were deliberately constructed from cast concrete, and the bar counter-tops from five-layered marble slabs. However, the seeming brutality of these materials is balanced by the tactility of diverse textiles found throughout the space. The below-ground level is literally flooded with animal and botanical motifs in various sizes and scales – the stunning intensity of the patterns seemingly leads one onto a wild safari, blurring the borders of reality. Textiles also feature in the top floor’s ceiling installation, which spatially connects several areas into one.
The menu at Michaels mainly consists of local and seasonal ingredients combined with the chef’s decidedly Scandinavian vision of gastronomy.