The Roman Catholic church in Axel was registered to be demolished, but the Luitjens family of entrepreneurs wanted to save the church and devised a new purpose for the building. It was decided that a catering company would occupy the space.
The challenge for XS was to create a cozy dining area in the high, drafty and echoey space.
The temperature within the space was a point of concern, due to do a constant draught of wind. To resolve this we installed underfloor heating, a heating system, and fans in the ceiling. These push the rising warm air back down. Thanks to these solutions, the climate control in the Family Axel eatery is well under control.
To counteract the noise, the vaults were fitted with an Asona spray ceiling, which has a sound-absorbing effect. The selected furniture and the many plants within the space also contribute to the improved acoustics.
To integrate the family aspect of the project, we designed a bulkhead with a graphic band over the kitchen area. In this way the graphics were given a central place in the space, while still keeping the unique appearance of the church building intact. We enhanced the effect of the vaults by painting the ceiling anthracite gray and painting the ribs in a contrasting green.
The result can be seen in the photos. Atmosphere and conviviality in a beautiful, architecturally complex building. The wrecking ball failed to bring this church down.