Moonshot Cafe: A Zen-Inspired Oasis at CES 2023

Takeshi Yoshida's Award-Winning Exhibition Booth Design

In the bustling environment of CES 2023, one of the world's largest technology conventions, a unique oasis emerged. The Moonshot Cafe, designed by Takeshi Yoshida, was a rare sight amongst the sea of traditional exhibition booths. Drawing inspiration from the simplicity and minimalism of Zen, Yoshida created a space that not only showcased Japan's uniqueness but also fostered conversation and interaction.

Yoshida's design stood out for several reasons. First, the concept of a cafe in a convention was a refreshing departure from the norm. The Moonshot Cafe aimed to be a haven where attendees could engage in meaningful conversations. Second, the design emphasized transparency and spaciousness, a strategic move considering the venue's low ceiling. This approach attracted more attention from convention-goers. Third, the space was filled with greenery, reflecting an eco-friendly attitude and creating a cozy atmosphere. Lastly, the carefully chosen modern art decorations at the cafe counter represented contemporary Japan.

The realization of the Moonshot Cafe design required careful consideration of the venue's limitations. The low ceiling height necessitated a focus on transparency and spaciousness. Yoshida achieved this by minimizing wall usage and keeping exhibition table heights low, allowing an unobstructed view from one end of the space to the other. In contrast to the cold white lighting typically used in technology-themed conventions, warm white lighting was used to create a cozy cafe atmosphere.

The Moonshot Cafe covered an area of 90 feet x 50 feet, or 2743 mm x 1524 mm. The design was realized between August 2022 and January 2023, starting in San Francisco and finishing in Las Vegas. The cafe was then exhibited at CES 2023. The design process involved extensive research, including literature reviews and fieldwork at other conventions. This research informed several design, production, and realization aspects, such as the use of warm white lighting, music, aroma oil, and greenery, as well as the emphasis on transparency and spaciousness.

One of the significant challenges Yoshida faced was the venue's low ceiling height, which also prohibited hanging signs, a common tool for attracting attention at conventions. The solution was to focus on creating a transparent and spacious environment, which was achieved by minimizing wall usage and keeping exhibition table heights low. This approach allowed attendees to appreciate an unobstructed view of the space, encouraging them to visit the area.

The Moonshot Cafe design was recognized with the Silver A' Interior Space, Retail and Exhibition Design Award in 2023. This prestigious award is given to designs that demonstrate outstanding expertise and innovation, strong technical characteristics, and splendid artistic skill. The award is a testament to Yoshida's remarkable level of excellence in creating a design that not only showcased the uniqueness of Japan but also fostered conversation and interaction in a convention setting.

Project Details and Credits

Project Designers: Takeshi Yoshida
Image Credits: Takeshi Yoshida
Project Team Members: Takeshi Yoshida
Project Name: Moonshot Cafe
Project Client: Takeshi Yoshida

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