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Bohlin Cywinski Jackson

Blue Bottle Wolf Point Honored at AIA Chicago Designight

Nestled into a new residential tower overlooking the Chicago River, the café combines hospitality with flexible program elements, inviting neighbors to gather, learn, and connect.

"This year’s collection of incredibly thoughtful and well-designed buildings illustrates architects’ role as design champions for creating an equitable, sustainable, beautifully-designed world."
AIA Chicago Executive Director Jen Masengarb

Blue Bottle Café, Wolf Point was recognized with an honor award during AIA Chicago’s Designight, the chapter’s annual celebration of design achievements among its members. At 3,600 square feet, Wolf Point is Blue Bottle’s largest café––roughly one and a half times the size of the next largest café in the country. The café is divided into intimately scaled areas partitioned by full-height green channel glass with a series of custom European beech millwork pieces that create comfortable seating nooks. Product shelving with warm tones contrasts against the frosted glass and exposed concrete columns.

In addition to retail, the café also serves as a place to gather and learn about coffee and its preparation. A demonstration lounge, tucked in the southwest corner of the tower’s ground floor, offers space for presentations and classes, with a full coffee and espresso bar concealed behind bifold pocketing millwork panels. This flexible area responds to the client’s desire to launch a social outreach pilot program. The north lounge is designed to host revolving exhibitions or isolated points of sale for independent vendors or seasonal coffee offerings.

Project collaborators included DXU Architects as AOR, AMA Group, 41 North Contractors, and Silman.