Cocktails from an app? Introducing the self-driving Guido bar

Guido renderings © Gary di Silvio (CRA), Carlo Turati and Marco Conte (Makr Shakr)

A new bar concept is looking at how to work with advanced technology to improve life in cities. Guido is a self-driving, robotic cocktail-shaking bar. Much like an Uber, it is summoned through an app, will come to you wherever you are to mix-up your tailored drink. What’s more, once you’ve made your order and tapped in the location, the system will verify your age through an ID scan and let you pay with your phone. Guido has wider ambitions too, to create social hubs in otherwise neglected urban areas. Sounds intriguing? We thought so.

Guido is an initiative of the Turin-based design and research studio Carlo Ratti Associati and leading robotics bar makers Makr Shakr. Currently, the system is in the process of development since much of the mechanics are already with us. The base vehicle, for instance, utilizes existing autonomous car platforms, and the bartender is composed of robotic mechanical arms that are already in production.

Carlo Ratti has been exploring the possibilities of autonomous travel through the Senseable City Lab at MIT. The team has carried out extensive research into how self-driving will alter the urban experience, designing products such as Roboat, an autonomous vessel piloted on the Amsterdam canals. With Guido, the team is taking a similar approach. Most major cities will have a few social hubs, generally leaving large areas empty at night, soulless, and sometimes dangerous. Guido will offer the potential to form new social dynamics. Once a person orders one, neighbours may join in for new interactions and community building.

Guido renderings © Gary di Silvio (CRA), Carlo Turati and Marco Conte (Makr Shakr)

‘Guido is the application of a city-on-demand paradigm,’ says Emanuele Rossetti, Makr Shakr chief executive. She feels there is the possibility of putting forward ‘a new idea for the experience of leisure,’ she says. ‘Our company has always encouraged a paradigm of participation when it comes to making your own drink. Now, what happens if you extend the same approach to the city? With Guido, we show how technologies can make cities more responsive, and ultimately more fun.’

Spinach Branding has quite a few clients within the hospitality industry. We often work with drinks companies and with restaurants and bars – repositioning the more traditional brands as well as creating new concepts. Guido is fascinating in how it is tapping into the ever-popular pop-up street food and drink culture. What also attracted us to the initiative is the way it is forging a positive dialogue between the old and the new – utilising what could be considered cold technology to improve life. It will be fascinating to see the Guido concept bringing light and life into the urban setting.

Images © Gary di Silvio (CRA), Carlo Turati and Marco Conte (Makr Shakr).

Spinach Branding is a specialist branding agency based in London. We work with established businesses and start-ups around the world to build and refine their brands. See how we work and get in touch to discuss your brand.

Guido renderings © Gary di Silvio (CRA), Carlo Turati and Marco Conte (Makr Shakr)
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