Rio Architects

Relocating and redesigning a cultural hotspot







Porters Cardiff, a popular establishment at Harlech Court since 2012, recently underwent a remarkable transformation, relocating to a new home on Barrack Lane. The new venue offers diverse spaces and environments that align with its renowned versatility and atmosphere.​

The task of relocating a thriving business can be a challenging and nerve-wracking experience yet can lead to the most rewarding outcomes. Any business move brings with it a degree of uncertainty. Our client wanted to transform this challenge into an opportunity to recreate its quirky location, which serves as a bar, live music venue, and so much more and build it into something extra special.

The design of Porters’ new home was driven and inspired by their passion for community. The overarching objective – to reflect their identity and to be a part of the preservation, promotion, and identity of Wales’ capital city as a hotbed of culture, creativity, talent, and good times.

While strategically located, the building chosen for the move required extensive work to make it fit for its varied uses.  Not least the technical challenges of locating a buzzing live music venue in close proximity to residential accommodation.

We started the process with a thorough evaluation of the existing building. We reviewed the requirements, the layout opportunities, and the extent of the renovation work. We understood the importance of keeping the business owner and stakeholders in the loop, so we discussed and made every decision together.

The innovative use of the existing space has transformed an unconventional building into a vibrant, functional, and diverse venue, providing customers with a new, unique layout and a new lease of life.

The building houses a relaxed bar area, a performance space, additional rehearsal and multifunctional areas and an exciting opportunity for future development.

Housing designed with nature on its doorstep