VM&RD - - CONTENTS - Chanda Ku­mar

Cof­fee goes to the next level at the lat­est Star­bucks out­let in Am­s­ter­dam, where the new store con­cept func­tions as lab­o­ra­tory with a ‘Slow’ Cof­fee The­atre, hy­per lo­cal de­sign, float­ing community gath­er­ing spa­ces and in-store bak­ing. Star­bucks - The Bank is a glimpse into Star­bucks' vi­sion to the fu­ture.

Star­bucks, with a stag­ger­ing 19,800 stores across 59 coun­tries, re­cently opened its first con­cept store ‘Star­bucks –The Bank’ in Europe. The store is lo­cated in the vault of the his­toric Am­s­ter­damsche Bank, a land­mark build­ing on Am­s­ter­dam’s fa­mous Rem­brandt Square. The store func­tions as a test space for rare and ex­clu­sive cof­fees, di­verse cof­fee brew­ing meth­ods, and new food con­cepts. The ‘Slow’ Cof­fee The­atre is in­spired by the ‘Slow’ Food move­ment as it will de­liver a su­per-pre­mium, per­sonal cof­fee ex­pe­ri­ence.

“This store is the ul­ti­mate ex­pres­sion of cof­fee, de­sign and community at its best. We strate­gi­cally placed our first Euro­pean con­cept store in Am­s­ter­dam as our Euro­pean head­quar­ters and roast­ing plant are lo­cated here,” said Rich Nelsen, Se­nior Vice Pres­i­dent of Star­bucks Europe, Mid­dle East and Africa.

The space takes Star­bucks store de­sign strat­egy to the next level cre­at­ing a deep con­nec­tion to cof­fee and the lo­cal community. Mea­sur­ing 4,500 sqf, the store is con­cep­tu­al­ized as a the­atre space with the 57 foot cof­fee bar as its stage, the multi-level community ar­eas will cameo as stages for lo­cal bands, po­etry read­ings and other cul­tural ac­tiv­i­ties.

“With this store I was in­spired not only by the role 17th cen­tury Dutch traders played

in bring­ing cof­fee to the world, but also by the place The Nether­lands holds to­day as a de­sign and cre­ative cap­i­tal,” said Liz Muller, Di­rec­tor of Global Con­cept De­sign, Star­bucks. “My vi­sion was to bring the space to life by cel­e­brat­ing lo­cal his­tory and tradition while look­ing to the fu­ture by giv­ing it a sense of the­atre and dis­cov­ery.”

Trans­form­ing the vault of the for­mer bank into Star­bucks-The Bank, more than 35 lo­cal artists and crafts­peo­ple worked un­der the di­rec­tion of Dutch born Muller who was also the cre­ative force be­hind the first three Star­bucks con­cept stores that opened in Star­bucks home town, Seattle, start­ing 2009.

In their drive to build sus­tain­able store de­signs, The Bank is a sig­nif­i­cant aes­thetic de­par­ture, kit­ted with witty lo­cal de­sign touches and built with sus­tain­able ma­te­ri­als. It was built un­der strict Leed sus­tain­able build­ing guide­lines to re­duce the im­pact on the en­vi­ron­ment.

Act­ing as the fo­cal point of the space, The Bank houses one of the long­est cof­fee bars in Europe, where the 17-me­ter long bar pro­vides

the set­ting for ‘Slow’Cof­fee The­atre which will pre­miere Star­bucks’ first ever Clover brew­ing sys­tem in Europe. Of­fer­ing an area for high in­ter­ac­tion is the large wooden community ta­ble top made by lo­cal crafts­men from Dutch Oak.

An eye-catch­ing de­sign el­e­ment is the ceil­ing sculp­ture above the community ta­ble which is made from 1,876 pieces of in­di­vid­u­ally-cut oak wood blocks. Here each wood block was hung by hand at dif­fer­ent heights to cre­ate a rélief ef­fect. The Star­bucks Siren also has been stained into the wooden blocks.

The walls have been trans­formed in­ter­est­ingly, which adds char­ac­ter and lo­cal flavour to the space. Re­cy­cled burlap sacks used for trans­port­ing cof­fee around the world are used as dé­cor around the con­crete pil­lars. While a sec­tion of wall is clad in bike tire in­ner tubes, with a nod and a wink to the very tra­di­tional trans­porta­tion the Dutch use daily. Adding to this, wooden "Spec­u­laas" moulds used to make tra­di­tional Dutch bis­cuits, line the walls.

Cre­ated by a lo­cal artist, the mu­ral in­spired by tra­di­tional ‘Delft­ware’ de­sign fea­tures a story that cel­e­brates the im­por­tant role 17th cen­tury Dutch traders held in bring­ing cof­fee around the world.

The orig­i­nal mar­ble floor tiles, pre­served from when the build­ing was con­structed in 1926, cover an area where the orig­i­nal bank vault was lo­cated. Be­sides this, re­claimed an­tique "Delft Blue" tiles have been given new life at the store. All the fur­ni­ture has been re­claimed, re­stored and given a new life. Star­bucks –The Bank has em­ployed var­i­ous mea­sures to in­cor­po­rate sus­tain­able de­sign and build method­olo­gies which have be­come vi­tal to the Star­bucks store de­sign con­cept to­day.

In terms of wa­ter and en­ergy con­ser­va­tion, the store uses low-flow faucets which help

con­serve wa­ter, while LED and CFL bulbs re­duce the use of en­ergy. Within the store, nat­u­ral, wa­ter-based and chem­i­cal free paints have been used, which also avoid in­ter­fer­ence with the cof­fee aroma.

Dur­ing con­struc­tion, the ma­jor­ity of re­sult­ing waste was di­verted from the land­fill, where wood, met­als and con­crete were reused or re­cy­cled.

With the be­lief that en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact should be as min­i­mal as pos­si­ble, Star­bucks has been build­ing and ren­o­vat­ing stores with locally sourced ma­te­ri­als and crafts­men and in­cor­po­rate reused and re­cy­cled el­e­ments where pos­si­ble.

While Star­bucks -The Bank brings cof­fee and community in a unique and cre­ative set­ting, one can only imag­ine what the next con­cept store will of­fer

Star­bucks strate­gi­cally placed the first Euro­pean con­cept store in Am­s­ter­dam as their Euro­pean head­quar­ters and roast­ing plant are lo­cated there

This Euro­pean store De­sign Con­cept is the ul­ti­mate ex­pres­sion of cof­fee, de­sign and community at its best

An eye-catch­ing de­sign el­e­ment is the ceil­ing sculp­ture above the community ta­ble which is made from 1,876 pieces of in­di­vid­u­al­ly­cut oak wood blocks

A ‘Slow’Cof­fee The­atre of­fers an area for high in­ter­ac­tion on a large wooden community ta­ble top made by lo­cal crafts­men from Dutch Oak

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