In designing her first pop-up café, Valérie Messika says she has taken everything she’s learned from jewelry to create a warm, welcoming experience that spotlights what makes Paris so magical.
Maison Messika opened a rooftop lounge at Paris’ Printemps Haussmann department store this summer that is a visual and literal feast. Café Messika offers visitors expansive views of the city while they dine, drink, and enjoy the sunshine before winter sets in. In other words, hurry to catch it before it closes in October.
“With Café Messika, I saw an opportunity to go even further and express myself in every aspect of the art of living, from decor to drinks and food service. It was a way to say a little more about me and create a complete café concept,” says Messika, founder and artistic director of the jewelry brand.
Serving breakfast, lunch, and snacks, the café has a fully stocked bar, including champagne for sipping during evening entertainment. Messika hopes that people feel as welcome in this space as they do in Messika stores, as both are a reflection of her and her family’s hospitality, and that they feel like they can spend hours there, eating and drinking with friends.
“The idea is to give the café a cozy feel that is not intimidating,” Messika says. “There are various experiences, from a strong central bar that brings people together to more intimate alcoves. Everyone will be able to use the space as they desire.”
Messika’s jewelry provided inspiration for the café’s décor. The jeweler says she wanted to stretch her ideas about fine metals and gemstones into interior design. That is why you see the warmth of gold or surfaces that light bounces off, as it does with a diamond.
Inspired by her Move collection, Messika used curved lines wherever she could—the shape of the bar, the arches over tables, the mirrors that reflect the Parisian skyline. The café’s colors are bold shades of red, blue, purple, and gold, giving the space a feeling of art deco luxury that a young Ernest Hemingway might appreciate. Contrasting materials such as matte marble, shiny chrome, and flashy neon create an energy.
Café Messika is a partnership between the jewelry company, Printemps Haussmann’s 7ème Ciel, and chef Juan Arbelaez, who created the menu, which includes healthy items as well as sweets, like ice cream and cookies.
“We really want to awaken the senses—sight, sound, and taste—with a guilt-free gourmet menu that brings together healthy and delicious products for an even more pleasurable experience,” Messika says. “It was important for me not only to create an aesthetic setting, but also a place to discover fine flavors.”
Top: Café Messika, the first pop-up dining experience created by Parisian jewelry maison Messika, opened in May and will continue into October. (Photos courtesy of Messika)@jckmagazine
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