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New eatery in Ħad-Dingli channels Mediterranean and art deco dining
The architectural firm Mizzi Studio, is on a mission to resuscitate local Maltese heritage, by converting a corner property in the core of Ħad-Dingli, into a contemporary café.
Barbajean, located in the heart of the village, was designed to “celebrate the joy and tradition of eating and drinking – an activity that unites friends, family and communities and that that has been inextricably linked with architecture for centuries,” said Jonathan Mizzi, Studio Director.
The Studio’s team embraced the brief for Barbajean as a context driven conversion project and they were influenced and inspired by all that characterises the village. Dingli is one of Malta’s most beloved belvedere desinations, with unparalleled sea views and landscapes.
The design concept for Barbajean, took cues from typical Maltese faċċata (façade), its coloured timber doors, glass antiporta, informal parapet steps and the mid-century terrazzo architrave tradition.
The eatery has been shaped from the inside out as a customised design statement, ranging from the signage to the furniture to the light fixtures and the bar space recalls the elegance of European Art-Deco bistros. The space features three slender repeating arches, which are lit with neon accents and calligraphy rendered in a pale pink, speckled terrazzo.
“Ħad-Dingli represents the modest and slow-paced way of life that is so typical of the Mediterranean and Malta specifically – the village’s extensive rural buffer and spectacular views also reminds us of our islands’ magnificent natural landscape,” said Jonathan. The studio is influenced by nature and how architecture can live in harmony and unison with its natural surroundings.
Barbajean was envisioned as a “pit stop or end destination that might weaver into long walks within the region’s beautiful landscape. Barbajean stands at the core of a quintessential Maltese village experience, giving people an opportunity to stop and reflect on the beauty of the natural surroundings and nearby cliffs,” he added.