Francisco MANGADO

Restaurant La Manduca de Azagra+



800 m2

The premises chosen for the new restaurant, a large space of two floors, were empty after a structural renovation which left behind some differences in level on the access floor that determined a series of constructive and structural decisions, especially the location of the stairs, which had to be considered. There were many subdivisions due to the system of load bearing walls that formed the basic structure of the 19th century building in which these premises are located.

The different spaces succeed one other starting from the entrance, so allowing the restaurant to be pleasantly organized in consecutive dining areas, avoiding an excessively crowded atmosphere. 

Only three materials, all natural and modest, are used. The vertical surfaces are clad in the same brick blocks that are normally used to build the partition walls in modest houses. These blocks, always plastered and concealed, show if unveiled a texture that acquires an important value through the repetition and reflection of light. The spaces between load bearing walls are shaped with black varnished sheets, stressing the transition that the thickness of these constructions, increased by the superposition of brick, entails. The same sheet is used to refurbish the main staircase, which, even when kept in the same position, undergoes specific alterations that aim to simplify it and enhance its volumetric character within the underground space, of greater floor-to-ceiling height. A black ceramic pavement, with a slightly rough texture, partially covers one height of the walls, offering, along with the ceiling, a neutral frame in which the illumination may be enhanced.

To achieve the desired light and acoustic effects, the ceiling breaks into a series of creases. The light placed behind the brick surface of the walls, in the upper and lower level – both lines reflected over the cracked black surface of the ceiling and the floor – give the whole an appearance of lightness, as a sort of layered canvas, without concealing the constructive operation carried out with the brick. The rest of the illumination in the restaurant tries to maintain the desired mysterious effect as much as possible, taking the form of standard lamps that intensify the light over the tables without interfering with the overall illumination.

Calle Sagasta, 14, 28004 Madrid, España

FAD Awards 2004. Interior Design Category
FAD Awards.Finalist Project: Restaurant "La Manduca de Azagra" in Madrid.
IV SALONI Awards. Interior Design Category
SALONI Awards.Finalist Project: Restaurant "La Manduca de Azagra" in Madrid.
XVIII Urbanism, Architecture and Public Works Awards, Madrid City Council
Honorable Mention in Commercial Spaces Category: Restaurant "La Manduca de Azagra", Madrid.
Tapas. Spanish Design for food
Oris #82
ISSN: 1331-7571
La Gaceta de los Negocios: La Gaceta Fin de Semana
La Gaceta de los Negocios. Madrid (Spain)
TC Cuadernos 72-73: Francisco Mangado. Arquitectura 1998-2006
Madrid-Barcelona, in parallel: Two cities in 40 images
Fundación Colegio Oficial de Arquitectos de Madrid. Madrid (Spain)
ISBN-10: 9788496834
Cool Restaurants Madrid
teNeues Publishing Group. Düsseldorf (Germany)
ISBN-10: 9783832790295
Opere e progetti: Francisco Mangado
Mondadori Electa. Milan (Italy)
ISBN-10: 9788837031879
Conarquitectura #11
Proyecto Contract #10
MC Ediciones S.A. Barcelona (Spain)
Diseño Interior #140
Globus Comnicación S.A. Madrid (Spain)
Catalogue 4th Saloni Awards
Catalogue Urbanism, Architecture and Public Works Award of Madrid City: 18th Ed.
Empresa Municipal de la vivienda y suelo del Ayuntamiento de Madrid. Madrid (Spain)
On Diseño #253
Arquitectura Viva #93: Masa Crítica
Restaurant La Maduca
From the start there was something poignantly coincidental about the proposal and its development. The owner, a friend of mine, had in a town of southern Navarre inherited a farm shed from his father, actually a warehouse in poor state of preservation where an old tractor was kept. The existing construction stood outside the urban core of Azagra, surrounded by similar constructions that looked so desolate as to make it hard to imagine a quality construction on the site possible. The owner, a sensitive and highly determined person, had found an old cellar of concrete and bricks beneath the shed, underground. This space, adequately transformed and ‘conditioned’ in his imagination, became the seed of entrepreneurial ‘fantasies’ of building a haute-cuisine restaurant.It was this insistent dream that transformed certain initial reservations into a work process that in the best of cases must be considered surprising. The place, previously frowned upon, presented itself as something suggestive, and by progressively revealing itself it went from apathy and a seeming absence of attributes to being a crucible of surprises and suggestions. Besides retrieving the underground space for a new use, it was necessary to raise a building above ground that would lead into the cellar and in itself play a significant role in the intervention.This large access space incorporates suggestions of high architectural content. On the outside, a plastic and visual relationship is generated by the contrast that is set between the abstract composition of the access facade and the natural backdrop of rocks. Inside, the courtyard, besides bringing in light, recalls the topographical reality behind the project, while enhancing the interior space, built entirely with large wooden boards.