Location: Pune, Maharashtra, India
When we started thinking about the new fitout for the iconic Blue Frog club, our main concerns were to free up floor space to maintain a minimum count of guests, while retaining the iconic design language of the Frog, which has made it one of the country's premiere music venues. We decided to change the typology from circles, to hexagons, that allowed a more compact packing.
The first step was to carve out singular symmetries from an inherently asymmetrical layout, to provide an even acoustic experience. We worked closely with Munro Acoustics to design the concept of the lounge, the sonic experience was paramount and governed the design to a large extent.
The emergent layout for the club saw the new hexagonal configuration in action, with demarcated levels and pods all following the new design language. We packed the pods towards the edges on raised levels, which created personal dance floors, also helping in freeing up floor space for their busy nights.
The critical line-of-sight analysis carried out made sure that guests on even the last pods have a clear view of the artist. This generated more functional guidelines for us to further refine the design.
One of the earlier breakaway ideas was to invert the signature geometries of the Frog onto a ceiling experience, which allowed us to experiment with a technical acoustic ceiling panelling, which also took into account trusses and lighting rigs, speaker mounts etc, while freeing up the entire floor area for packed gigs. This decision governed the entire experience of the Club.
Detailed wireframe visualisations allowed us to generate volumetrics for the space experience, and decide on placements and symmetries. The ceiling panels were designed as a parametric surface, with angles that allow a controlled sonic experience for various parts of the club
Parts of the build for BlueFrog saw the hexagonal typology applied to various details, fabricated elements, across a wide material palette. We aimed to stay true to this new typology such that the new design language could be a recognisable one across their new properties.
Detailed requirements from Munro Acoustics guided the design of wall panels, where we converted their stringent reflection / absorption percentages into ornamented details, following the hexagonal patterns. The idea was to translate the design language into every detail on site.
Further detailing on surfaces translated into waveform inspired grooves, that evoke the sensuousness of retro vintage listening-rooms, where warm timber panels aid in creating textured sound. We intended for the new BlueFrog to also have a day scene, for brunches and lunches, to allow them more flexibility in programming.
BlueFrog Pune in it's finished look. The large central dance floor area caters to Pune's large student population, and allows an intimate interaction with guests from the thrust stage. The central pillar on site, being unavoidable, was converted into a part of the soundbooth, which freed up the entire surrounding space for guests.
The view from the stage, looking out at the club, and the dance floor shows the retro inspired details on the pods, following the new hexagonal typology. Larger levels make use of a compact site, to allow direct line of sight.
The pod experience for table dining, and the ceiling acoustic panels allow for sound to be directed towards the dance floor, to create a higher energy zone where required. The pods were slightly quieter, with more absorption, to allow for conversation and a better dining experience.
The Outdoor bar at BlueFrog reflect the same ethos in detail, in black mirror and stone. We wanted the bar to pick up colours of the surroundings, to aid in a fun sundowner experience, and pick up all the colours of the sunset when in use.
The Indoor bar by contrast is a warm wood-toned bar with a waveform etching on the front. We located the large bar close to the main entry of the club to encourage a bit of compaction and high energy at the gate, which always helps in creating a buzz on entry.
Smaller details throughout the fitout extend the hexagonal design theme, and additional areas like service stations and single malt displays / cigar humidors were created to further the clubs's ambience for it's regular patrons
The Frog in action. The stage we designed features large timber wings that aid in projection mapping, to create a bespoke experience. We designed the stage to be the focus of the entire gig experience, and a cocoon for the artist.
The artist experience at BlueFrog is a more intimate, down-and-dirty feel, to reflect their new direction in programming, featuring a higher percentage of Electronica. This allows a greater audience interaction, and more fun gigs.
The BlueFrog also works interestingly for soulful performances, where the artist can be highlighted in a more downtempo fashion, using the wings and stage design in a more ambient way. The idea was to provide many modes for programming, and open up as many options as possible for the management.