coinciding with its brand renewal, swedish womenswear label rodebjer has inaugurated a new flagship store in norrmalm, an area of stockholm which in recent years has developed into the city's golden mile of luxury shopping. the store occupies a 300 sqm. ground floor unit of a former bank, and features an understated interior design created the brand's creative director carin rodebjer and swedish set designer and longtime collaborator sahara widoff. the duo have transformed the once strictly functional space into an inviting shopping environment, combining clean lines, an exotic palette of colours, and various materials. the existing concrete floor with its grid-like pattern has been overlaid with a configuration that visually adds up, creating an entirely new aesthetic. most fixtures have been custom-made, including a striking display table that meanders through the store, a carpet with abstract motif, and last but not least, a sales counter made of terracotta. the new rodebjer store carries the brand's full range of women's apparel, shoes and accessories. location: smålandsgatan 1 [norrmalm].
since it inception in 1870 department store de bijenkorf has grown into a prominent fixture in the dutch retail landscape. its offerings have always been categorized as upscale, but only since being snapped up by british luxury retailer selfridges six years ago has the department store embarked on a transformative trajectory to become on a par with international luxury standards. de bijenkorf currently operates seven branches across the netherlands, and its flagship store is located in the historic heart of amsterdam. setting the trend for all other stores, the store in the dutch capital also is an international showcase, and as such its format has been thoroughly tweaked, redefining luxury and style to an unprecedented level for the home market.
de bijenkorf's transformation has been in full swing during the past few years and it's now reaching its final stage with the reopening a refurbished ground floor, obviously the most prestigious section of the premises, and now awash with swathes of white marble and sleek furnishings and displays. next to counters laden with cosmetics, it's here where luxury brands have been given maximum exposure to showcase the latest bags and accessories in a number of branded shop-in-shops. beckoning avid local and a growing platoon of foreign shoppers are illustrious brands such as gucci, prada, tiffany & co., céline and dior. the extensive redevelopment will be finalised coming november, and by then a considerable number of additional shop-in-shops will have joined. location: dam 1 [centrum].
sunny st. barth isn't exactly a tedious place, and although luxuriating on a beach or super yacht is the main objective for most who come here during the summer, art saint barth adds a refreshing cultural bonus. the annual event aims to lend the island an aura of cultural coolness, and it has once again lured paris-based designer jean-charles de castelbajac to its shores for an exhibition. opening on sat – jul 30 [6pm-8pm] on the beach outside eden rock hotel, an iconic luxury property on the island and home to eden rock gallery, is de castelbajac's exhibition winds of changes. the showcase presents a series of ten flags, in addition to japanese ink drawings on lightweight cigarette paper to tell stories imagined and serene scenes with literary evocations such as robinson crusoe, the sea, strange animals and wild nature, all far away from all the turmoil of today’s society and captured on a triptych canvas. the designer's works represent hope, and the idea that the wind carries these images of hope around the planet, with messages of sharing, fraternity and love. location: eden rock hotel, baie de st.-jean [st. barth].
the coming of age of vanessa seward, the womenswear brand of the eponymous argentine designer, has just accelerated with the opening of a third boutique in los angeles. the designer first gained the global limelight creating women's capsule collections for french contemporary label a.p.c., but since the latter entity invested an undisclosed sum of money, the vanessa seward brand is making its mark on its own at an accelerated pace, also on the retail front. located in a lowrise structure on fashionable melrose place amidst other leading brands, the store occupies 93 sqm. [1,000 sq.ft.] and features another interior design by laurent deroo, the paris-based architect who also created all of a.p.c.'s boutiques worldwide.
the elongated space is relatively narrow, but the addition of an expansive skylight optically widens it, allowing in plenty of daylight along the way. directly below, a trapezoid marble display is installed which follows the countours of the skylight. it's flanked on either side by wooden panels –lacquered in a glossy dark blue with brass finish on one side, and as a contrast, entirely clad in brass on the other side. apparel pieces and shoes are respectively showcased on wall-mounted racks and shelving. the new vanessa seward boutique carries the brand's full range of clothing, shoes, bags and accessories.
interestingly, the store also comes with a musical selection that was specially chosen by seward's hubby, french musician and producer bertrand burgalat. the store opening in los angeles marks the fashion brand's global retail expansion, and it doesn't come as a surprise that later this year two additional standalone boutiques are scheduled to open – one in london, and a third parisian store in the tony neighbourhood of st.-germain. location: 8407 melrose place [west hollywood].
french luxury brand céline first opened a boutique in milan's prestigious duomo district in 2006. two years later, phoebe philo's joined the company as creative director, and since then the house has gone from strenght to strength, becoming one of the planet's most influential fashion brands. the brand's newest retail design code, introduced with the opening of a new flagship store in london in 2014, have now finally been applied to the milanese store. but that's not all, as an entire upper floor has been added, increasing the total retail space to 320 sqm. [3,445 sq.ft.]. the shop façade is included in the transformation, and now features large windows framed by precious iroko wood.
inside, the understatement continues, captured by clean lines and the use of natural materials. walls and ceiling a dipped in a pristine white hue, paired with terrazzo flooring. furnishings are few, comprising of onyx-clad cabinets and displays, in addition to travertine shelving. the ground floor presents céline's coveted bag collection, small leather goods and eyewear range. one floor up, the setting is a tad more lavish, featuring marble flooring with a diagonal parquet pattern of eleven different types of marble, and walls covered in beige arenino. additionally, danish artist thomas poulsen a.k.a. fos created specific furniture pieces for both floors. this setting forms the backdrop of both the ready-to-wear and shoe collections. location: via montenapoleone 25/2 [duomo].
as the retail extension of studio voltaire, a well-connected london-based contemporary art organisation offering trophy artworks, homewares and fashion pieces by leading creatives, house of voltaire has built quite a reputation through a number of pop-up editions in the british capital. and now, for the very first time, it has taken the format down under. set up in collab with qic global real estate, the temporary retail space has popped up at the former le louvre townhouse, the swanky former premises of the eponymous luxury retailer. set across various levels, sophisticated settings have been created that form the perfect backdrop for the highly exclusive trophies that have been selected for this antipodian editon.
in celebration of the opening, a number of artists have collaborated with leading british fashion designers to produce new and unique products, including ceramics by roksanda ilincic, hand-knitted sweaters by april crichton and nicolas party, simone rocha and kim gordon photographs, slogan sweaters by jeremy deller and prints by eddie peake. and that's not all, folks. adding a culinary element to the pop-up venue is the dining table, a 12-seat private dining room by acclaimed chef peter gunn. serving both lunch and dinner, it presents a setting that's similarly spiced up with art and design pieces which are all for sale. all items are for sale in store and online, and all proceeds support arts charity studio voltaire [open through jul 24]. location: 80 collins street [cbd].
newd studios is a pilot project of stevie vos and mareille schouten, two young creative professionals based in amsterdam. while traveling in india, the lack of wifi access forced the duo to ditch their smartphones and truly immersive themselves in a life on the road. prior to embarking on this trip they had had an outfit made, comprising of a shirt and slacks, suitable to withstand the country's blistering heat. interestingly, the suit became the starting point of many a casual chat on the street and inspired the wandering dutchmen to launch a clothing line that would be equally engaging. newd studios' first collection, named tall king, offers three of such suits, each comprising of a shirt and matching slacks. to add an urban touch, the designers collaborated with talented local artists steven van lummel and tim mastik who pitched in with distinctive graphics for the fabrics. each suit is manufactured in a limited edition, and is exclusively available online.
since its inception, the we bandits store has accommodated vienna's more adventurous fashion crowd by initially stocking happening scandinavian and korean brands. the offerings were showcased in a number of pop-up venues across town, but in 2012 founder sophie pollak decided to set up permanent shop in the city's mariahilf area. very recently, we bandits has expanded with a second store in the neighbouring, and equally cool, neubau dsitrict. we've actually mentioned it in a previous post, but the store is worthwhile featuring separately. as said, the store is a collab effort with swiss eyewear brand viu which occupies the ground floor space, but when venturing up the stairs, shoppers find themselves in the exclusive domain of we bandits.
light and bright, the interior design codes as defined by viu owner fabrice aeberhard seamlessly extend to the upper floor, and this is evident by many corresponding design details. the space, largely defined by an atrium which provides peeks of the floor below, is similarly whitewashed and uncluttered, featuring just a few and simple furnishings. apparel is presented on suspended racks and mannequins, and accessories are featured on wooden displays. we bandits carries both men's and women's apparel, footwear and accessories, and now predominantly stocks contemporary scandinavian brands, including henrik vibskov, veja, won hundred, uniforms for the dedicated and sandqvist. location: neubaugasse 36 [neubau].
© robot 3
sometimes it's worthwhile to stray from downtrodden paths, although we can imagine that in the case of a sprawling city like beijing, wanderlust requires a certain audacity and navigation skills. in huilongguan, a residential suburban neighbourhood in the north of the city, a funky little establishment popped up that may lure locals to its doorstep with its offerings, but we're particularly smitten with its new silvery guise. despite being named lucky bar, this isn't really a drinking den, but restaurant specialized in skewered meat dishes. indeed, a barbecue bar. the location, measuring a very modest 76 sqm. [818 sq.ft.], is totally inconspicuous, and was previously occupied by a ramen shop.
local architecture practice robot 3 was enlisted to create a transformation from shop to eatery, and has done so by initially drawing inspiration from the restaurant's geographic location and its socio-economic significance in the greater urban context that is the chinese capital. but in the end, the architects settled for the conclusion that design can be a transformative force that's able to creates new perceptions. given the limited budget, they thus created a cocoon-like setting out of panels of corrugated metal, covering the walls and ceiling of the elongated space. recessed walls and a circular ceiling cut-out are backlit, and add a visual twist, whilst concrete flooring balances out the shimmer and shine.
furnishings comprise of a service counter – replete with a whimsical component: a living tree – up front near the entrance, in addition to simple and sturdy metal tables and chairs that can accommodate up to 24 guests. a number of pendant lamps provide additional lighting. at the far end, cordoned off by a transparent plastic curtain, a private dining section is situated that seats an additional eight people. as said, lucky bar is carnivore heaven, featuring a menu dominated by skewered beef, pork and lamb chops, but fish and veggie options are also available. location: 43 kexing xi lu [huilongguan].
© robot 3