Kicking Horse Coffee, Invermere, British Columbia

The Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative, Calgary

Photography by Chris Amat

A coffee-centric ethos is at the heart of this renovated 5,000-sq.-ft. café: monochromatic blacks and greys echo the roasting process while nodding to the natural mountain landscape. Three key design elements — a coffee bar as a stage; a canopy resembling a proscenium; and a wooden screen acting as a metaphorical curtain — shape the atmosphere and are a clear theatrical ode to

the beverage Raymond Chandler once called “The life blood of tired men.” Folded metal plates form the proscenium and not only define spatial flow but also animate the café, while wooden screen, a transitional threshold, blur interior and exterior. Crafted from locally sourced cross laminated cedar, the screen mimics the surrounding forests’ materiality while its organic form doubles as seating and product display spaces, mirroring the area’s topography.