Courtesy Starbucks

Japanese architect Kengo Kuma has constructed a multi-storey Starbucks in Taiwan made from 29 shipping containers and inspired by coffee trees.

The white volumes have been staggered across four levels to create the 320 sqm mega-café, and set at 90-degree angles. This references the foliage of the plant as well as traditional Chinese bucket arches, used in temples and historic palaces.

Kengo Kuma builds a Starbucks from 29 shipping containers
Courtesy Starbucks

Each container is connected via glazed walkways while light is drawn inside via skylights and huge floor-to-ceiling glass panels, which punctuate the coffee shop’s facade.

Kengo Kuma builds a Starbucks from 29 shipping containers
Courtesy Starbucks

The cabins’ ribbed steel skin has been left exposed and paired with wooden floors to soften the space – part of the soon-to-open Hualien Bay Mall. Wooden booths are also dotted throughout the Starbucks store.

Kengo Kuma builds a Starbucks from 29 shipping containers
Courtesy Starbucks

Read next: Inside Kengo Kuma’s ‘ode to Scottish craftmanship’

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