El Rancho Alberto Aguilera is a really neat restaurant in Madrid with multiple personalities. Designed by Miguel Garcia Caridad, this Argentinian grill is anything but traditional. It includes a bar, two dining areas, and a private room.
El City Bar
El City Bar, the bar, is a very bright and high energy space with bright white walls, large black and white images from the 60s and 70s. The curved ceiling, also a nod to the 60s, allows for a very nice effect with the light that curves from the ceiling onto the wall. Even the duct, in stainless steel, was considered in the design and the fire extinguisher looks like an accessory. I really like the black glass wall in the back too.
The bar features a matte glass decorated with a floral pattern. Behind the glass are color changing LEDs. As the color of the lights changes, a new atmosphere is created in the space. A portion of the floor located in front of the window, also features color-changing LEDs, which probably gets the attention of any passerby. The white light shelves behind the bar were custom designed and provide a very nice contrast to the black wall.
The design of the first dining room, Salon Iroco, has a calmer softer feel to it. There isn't a lot of contrast in this monochromatic space but there is a lot of texture: The horizontal wood strips on the wall to the right, the wood floor, the fabric on the wall to the left and the vertical tubes in the back, and the tiled wall near the kitchen.
The stairs leading up to the bar are very interesting as well.They are covered with ceramic tiles in the shape of the name of various popular cities around the world. Two embedded lights in each riser emphasize this detail and create a nice effect.
Salón Bambú, the second dining room, is very similar to Salón Iroco in design except that the wall features bamboo behind a glass with a blue backdrop. The feel is a bit less serious and a bit more contemporary.
Salón Loft is the private room. It's like the love child between El City Bar and Salón Iroco: a mix of classic and trendy. It has a high contrast, the walls are either covered with black back-stitched leather, classic style ceramic mosaic mural, featuring the face of a classic statue, or covered with painted white bricks. The black crystal chandeliers are also a mix of modern and classic. I can see a lot of common elements with the bar and the first dining room.
There's another El Rancho, El Rancho Vincente Caledrón, also with multiple personalities when it comes to design, but completely different than El Rancho Alberto Aguilera, as shown here.
reference : Hosteleria, 2 trimestre 2009
photo: El Rancho Alberto Aguilera