Mary Jane is a sensual experiential space. It is a space where you can savor fine dining on the highest level, where you can survey carefully selected art pieces and where you can enjoy your passionate celebration. It is located underneath the gable roof on the top floor of an old and beautiful Art Nouveau complex designed by the German architect Franz Sales Kuhn, built between 1903 and 1906 in the center of Heidelberg, and entirely renovated and partly reconstructed between 2010 and 2012.

An architectural specialty are the inclined roof areas reaching from the floor level up to the roof ridge where they meet each other enclosing the space and creating an impressive spatial geometry with a maximum height of 5,5 meters in the centre axle. Divided into a smaller gallery and a larger dining space the latter one is additionally sectioned by huge vertical and horizontal beams forming the roof structure and making the spatial experience even more particular and unique.

The architectural contrast between the existence and the reconstruction, the old and the new, informed the concept for the interior design and led to the leitmotif „Precious Roughness“, attributes being not less contrasting. Rough materials were treated in a precious way or put into a precious context and in reverse precious objects and materials were combined and set in contrast to the roughness. A principle of refinement and processing that is quite similar to the culinary art of chef Namo Wrede whose staggering and sophisticated creations are served on Mary Janes‘ plates.

According to this tin-free steel has been impregnated and refined with oil and is used throughout the entire space to form large corridors functioning as passages, to cover the bar or to hide the heaters. Huge wooden oak boards treated with the yakisugi method, a treatment where wood is burned and therewith conserved, are placed as tables in order to provide a supportive and suitable backdrop for the dishes to shine and to be able to group guests together as well as to separate them in intimate togetherness. To be flexible regarding the illumination of the tables and to avoid cables hanging down from the ceiling customized floor versions of the Equatore lamp by Fontana Arte are positioned in the centreline of the tables. Its downward directed light perfectly brings the dishes into focus whereas the upward directed one slightly enlightens the dark-hued surrounding architecture enabling the guest to feel comfortably secure and to fully concentrate on the menu.

The smaller gallery space with its dark grey wall color equipped with the filigree Arrengements light by Flos and huge high-polished stainless steel mirrors are the perfect backdrop for art pieces to survey and complements this experiental space.


Typology: Hospitality

Location: Heidelberg

Year: 2021

Photo: Thilo Ross