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Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Restaurant
  • France
  • 2014

Abbaye de Fontevraud - The Restaurant & iBar

Région Pays de la Loire

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  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
    Le Restaurant © Nicolas Matheus
  • The Manda armchair, designed by Patrick Jouin iD and made by Italian manufacturer Gruppo Industriale Busnelli, is used in the cloister in its leather version with tinted beech legs. The bespoke table was made by CAA.
    The Manda armchair, designed by Patrick Jouin iD and made by Italian manufacturer Gruppo Industriale Busnelli, is used in the cloister in its leather version with tinted beech legs. The bespoke table was made by CAA.
  • Ceramiciste Charles Hair at his workshop © David Darrault
    Ceramiciste Charles Hair at his workshop © David Darrault
  • The bowl © Patrick Jouin
    The bowl © Patrick Jouin
  • L'iBar © Nicolas Matheus
    L'iBar © Nicolas Matheus
  • The refectory © Nicolas Matheus
    The refectory © Nicolas Matheus
  • The refectory © Nicolas Matheus
    The refectory © Nicolas Matheus
  • The refectory © Nicolas Matheus
    The refectory © Nicolas Matheus
The bowl
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The restaurant’s chef starts his meals with a surprise! – a surprise hidden in the hollow of a bowl topped with an upturned plate. To concretise this ritual, Jouin Manku called on the talents of Charles Hair, a ceramicist based near the Abbey. He came up with two creations that associate unfinished ceramic and enamel in a play of green and pale green-blue, inset with white, black and beige. This is an object that evolves – once the surprise has been eaten, the lid is turned over and becomes a side plate for bread – these objects punctuate the table like a beautiful landscape.


The refectory
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Is now transformed into a banqueting hall, perfectly revives the community aspect of the original priory. Intended for hosting special events, it has been conceived as a modular space. Between receptions, it returns to being a huge, calm living room where hotel guests can dream under the vaulted ceiling in front of the huge fireplace nestled at one end. Instead of religious paintings and the frescos of long ago, four textile triptychs accent the walls and absorb noise. The one fixed element in this ever-changing environment is an 8m-long table with metal legs, around which guests are invited to sit. Down the centre, a long line of candles cast shadows of the past… a gentle reminder of the monastic atmosphere of long ago.