A taste of the Orient
Forget the red lanterns, papier-mâché dragons and miniatures of the Great Wall. Forget chicken with almonds, spring rolls and fried ice cream. Welcome to Fulin – Luxury Chinese Experience, a magical restaurant that truly does justice to the flavours of age-old Chinese tradition.
Designed and built by fashion photographer Gianni Ugolini, Fulin (which means “happiness” in Chinese) is located in Florence, close to Piazza Francesco Ferrucci and the San Niccolò Bridge. The splendid building in which it is situated dates from the years in which Florence was the capital of the Kingdom of Italy (1865-1871) and is the result of the complex urban redevelopment project known as the “Florence restoration” carried out by Florentine architect Giuseppe Poggi. Extending over two floors, the restaurant boasts a magnificent attic terrace offering a view over a leafy area of Florence.
But the biggest surprise of all is the food itself, created by two young Italian-born Chinese chefs, one of whom was born into the business given that his grandfather owned a 1000-seat restaurant in Prato. Their intention was to recreate the true essence of traditional Beijing and Canton cuisine and to integrate it with local produce, all accompanied by high-quality Italian wines.
Another important aspect is the warm, sophisticated atmosphere of the interiors. The hospitality and attention to detail typical of Chinese culture are evident in the choice of furnishings used to create different spaces, some of which are delineated by bamboo stem screens which create a pleasing contrast between solids and voids.
The restaurant adopts a fusion style embracing a wide range of furnishings, from leather chairs to varnished furniture, Tuscan wood and ceramic. Stone-effect porcelain tiles from Caesar’s Elapse series were used for the dining room floors, the bathroom walls and the stairs. Chosen in the burnished Oyster shade and a 60×60 cm size, the nature-inspired collection creates an elegant, sober floor that fits in perfectly with the concept of the restaurant. The walls of the staircase leading to the upper floor are animated by the 20×120 cm Scrape decoration, whose surfaces stand out for their harmoniously discontinuous patterns and subtle artistic scratches.
The bathrooms stand out in particular for their elegant minimalism. The wooden countertops coordinate with homogeneous natural-coloured matt ceramic tiles, while the walls are characterised by the simplicity of the Groove decoration chosen in the pale Neutral colour and a 60×60 cm size, the alternation of visual and graphic cues epitomising the elegance and complexity of the overall project.
60x60, 20x120 cm
Oyster, Decoro Scrape, Decoro Groove Neutral
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): ≤ 0,1%
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): compliant
Resistance to deep abrasion (ISO 10545-6): ≤ 145 mm3
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): compliant
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): compliant
Modulus of rupture and breaking strength (ISO 10545-4): ≥ 47 N/mm2
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): R10 A matt
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): compliant
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): compliant