The space of a department store is analogous to that of a city, and the retail designers task is akin to that of an urban designer, accomodating diverse tenancies within a consistent frame and atmosphere, and managing the flows of people and goods in an unintrusive way.
This project is a refit of the grand luxury-goods retail space on the ground level of the historic Selfridges Department Store on Oxford Street, London.
The approach here has been to “restore the store,” wresting back some design control from the independent identities of the global brands. This was acheived by removing unsympathetic additions and introducing unifying elements with their own lustre and magic.
The key to this was an elegant wall of aluminium fins running around the perimeter of the room, holding shiny display cases suspended at different heights.
This project is at the coalface of the tension between “spaces” of the global brands, which can be located anywhere, and the historically and geographically situated “places” of the department store.
Project: Selfridges London Wonder Room and Bar
Practice: Klein Dytham Architecture
Client: Selfridges PLC
Location: Selfridges Oxford Street, London, UK
Year: 2006 – 2007