Set in a historic building in the heart of Bratislava, Slovakia, the Mirror Bar occupies a prime ground-floor position in the iconic Radisson Blu Carlton Hotel. The 13th-century structure is one of the oldest in the city, its gracious design recalling the grandeur and bohemian flair of old-world Europe.
© Martin Katler
© Victor Malyushev
The Mirror Bar was the brainchild of Bratislava-based architect Lucia Ortutová, principal of her eponymous firm, who oversaw its renovation in 2019. Ortutová sought to stay true to the hotel’s elegant attitude, retaining original architectural features —the historic ceilings, wooden frames, and mirrors— while incorporating contemporary elements and materials throughout. The aesthetic reflects the creative concept behind the cocktail bar: classy, natural, and artistic.
For lighting, Ortutová selected several Vibia fixtures. She calls them an ideal match because, as she explains, “they stand out, and yet with their sophisticated design they don’t try to overshadow the original historic interior of the bar.”
The North floor lamp illuminates the seating area. Created by Arik Levy for Vibia, the fixture features angled arms that branch out from its base, a plant-like look that echoes the botanical theme set by the sprawling tree dominating the centre of the room. Its deconstructed design casts focused light on the tables, emphasizing individual seating areas.
Affixed to the walls, Antoni Arola’s Palma light further reinforces the bar’s natural motif. Inspired by ancient hanging gardens, the lamp features two glowing semi-circles of blown opal glass joined by an aluminum belt. Its organic design, positioned in stacked pairs, gives off a warm glow that’s reflected in the room’s mirrors.
Mayfair by Diego Fortunato brightens the bar counter. A modern reimagining of a traditional, 18th-century French boulillotte table lamp, it feels perfectly in keeping with the space’s classic sensibility. A sleek steel structure and glossy green finish —another nod to the natural theme— add a contemporary touch.