Our practice was approached by the Australian subsidiary of Lindt Chocolatier, a long established Swiss Chocolate Company, to take over the task of designing the stores for a new concept, the “Lindt Cafe” .

This Cafe was to enhance the chocolate experience for the customer as well as create a retail outlet for specialist products. This idea was a world first for Lindt. The Lindt headquarters in Switzerland were initially a bit sceptical but saw Australia as a good testing ground for their local subsidiary's idea as the rest of the world would most likely hardly notice if the concept failed.

The concept proved to be a success and after the creation of a few stores here in Australia the worldwide CEO of Lindt gave instructions to all his subsidiaries to pursue similar concepts. Our practice has subsequently designed and built various Lindt cafes and shops in Australia but also in Tokyo and Zurich.

The design of the Lindt cafes aims to be inviting and classy, somehow the idea of creating a modern world version of a European “Kaffeehaus” was in the mix. The materials were selected to evoke this but also of course to represent chocolate. The resulting brown, white and golden colour palette was a far cry from the hitherto trademark Lindt-blue.
Since then the colour scheme developed for the Australian Lindt Cafes has in fact had an impact on the global Lindt ID as more and more elements representing the Lindt brand are now conceived in the brown/gold/white colour range. Each cafe has its own character and issues. Some are within shopping malls, some facing streets. There is also constant development of the concept so, while the over all family resemblance is maintained new elements are introduced each time.

The cafe in Martin Place in the centre of Sydney was worldwide the first Lindt Cafe and is still considered the flagship store. It was also the first one to be completely refurbishedt, as time had taken its toll. The new store, opened in January 2013, is brighter and more open, pays more respect to its heritage setting and allows for more retail space than the old store. The cafe in Chapel Street in Melbourne had the added complexity that the majority of the premises was deep in the back of the store and also significantly lower than the street level. As a result the street facade was designed to be as open, transparent and inviting as possible. Through the large glazing the Lindt signature design elements and, of course, the goods on offer can easily be seen by passers by and attract interest. Although there is a large street frontage there is only one entrance door, thus allowing the presentation of the wares right in front of the passers by.

New cafes and shops are currently planned all over Australia.