This Russian car wash looks more like an art installation

The Blackstar Car Wash in Moscow, Russia.
The Blackstar Car Wash in Moscow, Russia.

There isn’t much you can do to make a car wash facility sexy.

Or so we all thought.

A Russian car wash had more than its share of challenges when it was designed and built beneath a building in Moscow’s city centre, and yet it proves that even the most mundane commercial properties can be given the star treatment.

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The Black Star Car Wash puts a modern spin on an asset class that has boomed worldwide in recent years, with the wash’s dark interior and neon lighting thumbing their nose at the usual car wash experience.

With no natural light, the designers had to be innovative in their lighting solutions.

Designers GRETAPROJECT were given the challenging task of creating a car wash that resembled an art object and was an experience within itself, and yet also served its primary purpose as a washing facility – with incredibly limited space.

Being constructed in the bowels of the building, space was at a premium, while low ceilings, poor acoustics and a lack of natural light were all hurdles that required innovative solutions.

The Blackstar Car Wash in Moscow.

“Thus the intention was to expand the space visually and change its geometry,” GRETAPROJECT says.

The result is a mix of dark backgrounds, light installations and the space’s calling card – the calligraphic floor design that repeats the car wash’s name across the entire length and breadth of the property.

The car wash’s designer cafe.

“The BLACK STAR label symbol is the black sun which was used to create the lighting structure in the form of a ring in the washing boxes,” they say.

“As for the entrance zone, the X-formed lighting was installed to form a contrast of the symbols. To make the interior more energetic, the linear lamps are located at 45-degree angle on both sides of the entrance and exit. It creates the visual movement of the visitor’s sight and leads the visitor to the main part of the facility. The detailing light sign is located near the entrance of the carwash, and thus it is the hallmark of the project attracting visitors’ sight.”

As is the norm in modern car washes, a cafe also features, though this one features designer furniture and looks more like an art gallery than somewhere you’d wait while your Camry is being hosed down.

Black Star’s name is repeated across the floor of the property in calligraphic script.