Starbucks finds an unforgettable way to welcome guests to coffee paradise.  

Starbucks Initial Vision

Starbucks approached Oat Foundry to discuss a unique way to welcome guests to the new Hacienda Alsacia Visitor’s Center. The visitor center was to be the highlight destination for visitors of the Costa Rican coffee farms. As the epicenter of coffee research in a paradise location, the greeting sign needed to be unforgettable. 

Vision to Conception

Oat Foundry sat down with Starbucks designers to understand the aesthetic of the visitor’s center. Located between farms, on the side of the mountain, the center was designed to be completely open air, allowing a connection to the surrounding farms. Along with the location, our team needed to respect their desire to use non-invasive technology.

To maintain the look & feel of the visitor’s center, we all agreed a Split Flap could add to an incredible experience while ensuring a minimalist tech feel.

costa rica map

Creation of

Split Flap

In order to provide the visual and audio appeal Starbucks was looking for, we all decided a 3 row x 24 column Split Flap would be perfect for the job. The Split Flap displayed was assembled in our shop by hand to ensure the highest possible quality. The font and special characters printed of the flaps were included in our standard set of 50. The stock nostalgic font perfectly mimics the classic Split Flap signs, while ensuring clarity from long distances. In the end, the Split Flap was completed in 8 weeks without any production delays.

starbucks split flap
split flap installation

Paradise Installation

Our team offers on-site Split Flap installation, no matter the location. When asked, the Oat Foundry team was happy to hand deliver the 3R x 24C Split Flap to the visitor’s center. After arrival, our installation team traveled to the visitor’s center and started the installation.

The on-site installation was completed and the sign ran its final tests, all within 1-day.

An Unforgettable Destination

Two weeks after installation was completed, Starbucks had an opening party to celebrate the new visitor’s center. This put the Split Flap to the test as it would be welcoming the first guests to the beautiful location. The opening night was a huge success, with a final espresso toast held by Starbucks president, Howard Schultz. 

Final Result

“You guys were absolutely awesome!

Thank you for all your support on this project”

-Vanessa Rubio 

Design Manager – Starbucks Latin America

Interested in a Split Flap? 


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