Located on the iconic Avenue des Champs-Élysées, the historic Art Deco bank building from 1932 is uncovered and celebrated to create a carefully curated retail laboratory for world’s leading fashion, food and lifestyle brands to come together with each other and the surrounding city. The 6,800m2 Galeries Lafayette concept store officially opened its doors to the public in Spring 2019, welcoming local and global shoppers into the restored Art Deco gem. The generous four-story environment is the largest store on the famed Parisian boulevard and combines old world elegance with modern chic, hosting established and emerging brands, experiences and events.
The design pays tribute to the tactility and texture of the historical building. Throughout the store, visitors encounter precious materials and refined details from the past that are reinterpreted and deployed in a contemporary way. Walking around the lofty gallery-like space feels as moving through a composition of architectural elements that operate at the scale of furniture and create defined experiential shopping zones.
Shoppers are invited into the building through an inverse canopy on the street level. A glowing bridge ushers life into the heart of the building: a dramatic circular atrium covered by a monumental glass cupola that has been restored and uncovered for maximum daylight. The entire store unfolds itself on the ground floor and creates a bright new urban living room for brand activations, fashion shows and other special events. A grand staircase, which doubles as an auditorium during events, takes visitors to the mixed-use space on the first floor which features creative and emerging brands, as well as a denim lab, jewelry display, limited edition sneakers and tech products. A continuous golden ring of perforated metal wraps around all of the columns and creates a series of rooms and alcoves facing the atrium.
From the ground floor, visitors are immediately able to see the upper levels enticing them to explore the different destinations and activities. The escalators are finished in warm metal and a ribbon of glass in the same material palette as the central atrium. Exploring the store and its different levels feels like a carefully curated environment where furniture is never only storage: interweaving carpets become dressing rooms, countertops are a sculptural stack of elements, magic carpets for the shoe display double as furniture for the shoppers to sit and try the footwear.
The upper levels of the store are more refined and continue the idea of furniture as artifact. The top floor features a series of suspended glass vitrines that look like independent objects and can host a variety of experiences and activities visible from the lower levels.
On the second floor, shoppers can dine in the Oursin restaurant while enjoying views of the city or relax at the Citron coffee lounge on the 1st floor, both designed by French fashion designer Simon Porte Jacquemus and operated by Caviar Kaspia. Meanwhile, the entire basement floor is a Parisian food court, where groceries and eateries are divided into sweet and savory sections and where massive counters are arranged around welcoming shared tables.
Client: Groupe Galeries Lafayette
Collaborators: SRA Architectes (Local Architect), SETEC (MEP), AR-C (Structural Engineer), SNAIK (Lighting Designer), Theater Project (Acoustic Consultants), Cabinet Vanguard (Cost Consultants, Arch Specs), BIG Interiors (Interior Design)