Space. There’s just not enough of it, especially in the big cities. Developers are going to extremes to maximise space in some places; an entrepreneurial sort in London recently bricked up an alley between two terraces and put the newly-created “house” on the market for nearly £200,000 – even though you could stretch out your arms and touch both walls at once. Cheeky.
Things aren’t quite as crazy in the Ukrainian capital Kiev, although the front dining space of Simple restaurant did similarly used to be an alleyway from the street to a courtyard. No problem for architect Anna Domovesova and creative studio Brandon though. Whitewashed brick walls and added greenery help make the 2.7 metre wide area feel fairly spacious considering the constraints, and the wooden shutter panels and matching benches are a nice touch too. There’s more room to the rear of the premises where the floorplan opens out into the former courtyard to include a banquette arrangement that can accommodate slightly larger groups. There’s plenty more crate-like wood in here, with jars of preserved produce on the shelves that suggest a farmhouse kitchen, as well as some fun info-posters explaining how things are made.