Sound Advice is an elevated 70-seat cocktail bar designed as part of a larger flagship ArcLight Cinemas multiplex located in downtown Boston. Intended to be a destination in its own right, through its design, Sound Advice offers a warm and enveloping retreat from the energy and activity of the larger multiplex.
The project is anchored by two elements: the primary bar core and the secondary banquette spine. Each element helps define the space while orienting the patrons toward the view. The bar core is conceived of as a deep threshold element which provides a space of transition between the multiplex and intimate cocktail bar. It is carefully detailed and wrapped in a continuous envelope of dark painted slatted wood. Enveloping large existing concrete shear walls, a functional and bustling bar inhabits the interior of this element and activates it for the patrons of the cocktail bar and theater goers alike.
Wayfinding and branding design was conceived in tandem with the space and establishes a flexible family of branded text, symbols and line-types that accommodate its application across a wide array of printed and digital media formats. Wayfinding played a critical role in the project, beginning at the ground floor up to the third floor space – providing a continuity of guest experience that extends the warmth and enveloping quality of the bar strategically through the public spaces of the multiplex.
The existing thirty-foot ceiling height was an added challenge to the brief. Rather than viewing this existing condition as a liability, AAmp saw it as an opportunity. Incorporating a series hanging pendant lights in the space allowed for the scale of the space to be brought down, and create warm intimate spaces below the lighting. The height of the space was celebrated through heavy velvet curtains along expansive glass that could control light, create a dramatic presence and provide framed views to the city beyond.