Dear Maria is an espresso and pátiserrie bar based in Johannesburg, South Africa. They passionately source, prepare and serve only the highest quality coffee roasted from various hand-picked micro-roasters around the world.
The name derives from the client dedicating the establishment to his mother, Maria. The bar is a metaphoric written letter to Maria, which is the driving concept that resulted in the branding assets and is symbolically represented through the use of a stamp.
I worked with my wife, Samantha Shan, to conceptualise and develop the interior space. In further dedication to the client’s mother, Samantha conceptualised a space that is raw in materiality, while retaining a sense of homeliness that feels ‘lived in’ but modern. To complement the colours derived from the brand identity, the material palette is centred around the use of raw reclaimed timber and speckled terrazzo. The terrazzo is featured in the custom made countertops that has embedded within it the colours aligned with the brand.
Photos: Alexi Portokallis & Roarke Bouffe