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The Summit: From Concept To Complete Brand Experience
Café / Co-Working / Art Gallery / Event Space
in San Francisco, CA
A Third Space for SF's Burgeoning Creative Class.
Ray Oldenburg popularized the notion of the 3rd spaces as community centers outside of the Home (1st) and Work (2nd) that fostered “anchors of community life and facilitate and foster broader, more creative interaction."
Concept Development and Creative Direction
We named the concept "The Summit" because of its multiple meanings. It was going to be a place for artisans, entrepreneurs, and free thinkers to work, gather, and create. We built the brand around creative collaboration and cultivating craft culture. The Summit was one of the first to merge café, event space, and co-working into a single location.
"Desi Danganan, the Summit's boyish, 35-year-old managing director, and his creative team—which includes Freddy Anzures, a member of Apple's (AAPL) original iPhone design group—have taken great pains to turn this third place into what Danganan calls "a creative commons" that could pretty much only exist in San Francisco".
To Create a Brand About Collaboration, Collaborate to Build It
For the Summit to truly be about gathering and creating, we assembled a team of talented local artists for graphic and interior design. Since 3rd spaces were meant to be anchors of community life, we took inspiration from the United Nations and the architect of its headquarters, Oscar Niemeyer to build a modernist space for innovation.
The interior design of the space draws inspiration from the mid century modern aesthetic featuring clean lines and curves. We chose to use a lot of dark natural wood to humanize the space since many people would be working on their laptops. We chose tables that could easily be moved configured to facilitate, art shows, lectures, and pop-up dinners.
To create the logo and brand assets we turned to designer Freddy Anzures. The logo mark was a stylized version of the double M form. The logo would be integrated into posters promoting all facets of the Summit.
Going Beyond Design and Creating Experiences
Food And Beverage Program
The food and drink menu in the café was an important brand touchpoint. To develop the menu we turned to local up and coming chefs. For drinks, we partnered wish Oakland's Blue Bottle coffee, independent beer makers, and served a wide selection of loose leaf teas. Some evenings we brought in rotating dessert chefs to sell to customers.
Peek Gallery: Celebrating the Connoisseur as Curator and Craft as Art
During the day the Summit was a place to gather and co-work. In the evenings and weekends we curated large art gallery events showcasing up and coming artists. Our events went beyond art, we held pop-up dinners, literary events and musical performances.
Curated Magazine Rack
Traditional cafés have reading material for customers to read while enjoying their coffee. We wanted to keep with that tradition but add a creative twist. Our magazine rack featured independent zines, graphic novels, and a mix of vintage and current magazines.