Originally constructed in 1966 by the Hungarian architect Marcel Breuer, the Met Breuer of New York is one of the city’s most famous brutalist structures. After years of being home to the Whitney Museum, the building became part of the Met Museum in March 2016, hosting exhibitions dedicated to modern and contemporary art. Today, the building is enriched with a bar and a restaurant with a peculiarity: a recreated vibe of the 60s designed by New York studio Beyer Blinder Belle in creating the Flora Bar, and Flora coffee.
During the design phase, the architects started from Breuer’s original idea, using the same materials chosen in 1966 – such as cement, bronze and limestone – and constructed the spaces just as the Hungarian designer would have done. The result is an atmosphere suspended between the past and present, alternating typical elements of Marcel Breuer’s architecture with a contemporary twist.
In the rigorous and brutal spaces, softer and more welcoming furnishings are contrasted, such as leather seats, fabric armchairs and oak and marble tables. The concrete walls, left deliberately bare, leave room for the minimalist elegance of the bar area. The large windows then contribute to brighten the rooms, making the artificial light dialogue with the natural one.
Finally, resident chef is Ignacio Mattos, who along with restaurateur Thomas Carter owns two other restaurants in New York: the Estela and the Café Altro Paradiso.