On the second basement floor of a mall, a store covering 205 square metres hopes to be able to continue its brand philosophy while making break-throughs in multi-format retailing. The architect designed the store to meet basic functional needs, while also attempting to convey the emotion of cherishing good things by including "past" building materials.
These building materials create a certain dialogue with the store’s own furniture products. The columns near the corridor of the mall that were already there allowed the architect to design a new space that is enclosed by continuous walls, and includes functional zones that are relatively inclosed, such as shop windows, operation rooms, offices and storage. The design aims to create a column-free display space, while naturally forming two entrances on the southern and eastern sides.
The beauty of the interaction between time and objects is an important part of daily life, even if the scale is enlarged in architecture. When determining the material of the new walls, following the "cherishing things" lifestyle advocated by the brand, the architect also referred to the element of "time".
As the store is located in the basement of the mall, the materials had to meet stringent fire safety requirements. This led to washed stone becoming the most suitable choice of material to use. However, the use of washed stone was challenging. Typically, the operational procedure involves embeding the stones in the wall, and then washing them with plenty of water. However, the basement of the shopping mall doesn’t have the appropriate water facilities to do so. The workers therefore adopted a prefabricated method in order to achieve the desired result. The mixed stones were firstly glued to pieces of PVC mesh, that were then used to cover the walls. Any gaps between the stones were then filled with cement, and finally, the walls wiped clean.
On completion, the finished stone wall gives an illusion of proximity. The architects chose warm-coloured gravel in brown tones. The new walls of stone, full of a sense of volume, will hopefully stand out from the gray-toned environment and harmonise the colour of the furniture inside the store.
Architects | C+ Architects, Beijing, China
Location |Beijing, China
Technical Information | PVC and stones for vertical partitions
Picture credits | Zhi Xia, Jing Liu, Lost&Found