In an eclectic, tightly knit neighbourhood of Victoria, British Columbia, locally loved Parsonage Café has new digs after operating in a previous location for over a decade. The team behind Fernwood Coffee have taken over and moved into a former upholstery and automotive shop, renovated by Vancouver-based Studio Roslyn.

In the process of building out the 223sqm space, a key facet of the design brief was to preserve the character, ambience, and community connections that developed over the café’s decade-plus tenure. A reconfigured layout and simple yet elevated materials allowed Studio Roslyn to improve the mechanics of the space whilst still staying true to a welcoming aesthetic, and one that complements the growing Fernwood Coffee brand.

Warm timber panels the walls and coffee counter, as well as being used for stools, tables, booths, and built-in bench seats that wrap around an L-shaped secluded nook. Nude leather seat cushions and grey stone, featured as both floor tiles and countertop, round out the minimal design. Striking a balance between thoughtful design and minimalism ensured the café retained a sense of familiarity and community so as not to alienate the existing customer base.

Enhancing this, Studio Roslyn maintained the same general seating layout of the previous location, with certain key upgrades integrated into the new site. Referencing Japanese minimalism and mid-century Austrian offices, the aforementioned predominant timber is comprised of five different varieties, creating tonal warmth and an inviting atmosphere. The secondary palette of grey, white, and blue provides a counterpoint in the more utilitarian kitchen and bar area, also enabling improved flow and operations for staff.

Parsonage is a prime example of thoughtful but not overwrought design that champions those who will actually frequent the space.


Related: Superbaba Middle Eastern Restaurant in Victoria, Canada by Studio Roslyn.


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[Images courtesy of Studio Roslyn. Photography by Lauren Zbarsky.]


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