Parisian fashion in Beijing
Galeries Lafayette, the upmarket French department store reopens its doors after 15 years in Xidan, Beijing to offer the Chinese market a different and unique shopping experience through both design and product with a truly French Parisian flavor.
The pride of Boulevard Haussmann (Paris) is all set to woo its potential Chinese clientele by authorizing itself as the destination for the fashionistas. Spread over seven floors, this 378,000 sq. ft. of flashy architecture is sure to become an iconic landmark for the city. The store had to bring a Parisian flavor to the plate and yet appeal to the Chinese consumers and cater to their taste. Bringing in the brand DNA- Abundance, Joy and Fashion- Galeries Lafayette had to expose the city to a new meaning of fashion credentials. “Creating a different and unique shopping experience to what is offered in the local Chinese market was very important,” says Mark Billington, Associate Director of HMKM, the design firm “The store needed to have its own tone of voice through both the design and product offering. It has a truly French, and especially Parisian flavor, running through the heart of the store.” Double-height windows, huge LED screens, the welcome arena, the glass paneling and of course, the lights and all that jazz create an impactful entrance and vouch for an upmarket shopping environment. The LED screens permanently feature fashion shows highlighting latest trends to showcase a preview of personified fashion to the customers walking into the store. Once inside the store, the resemblance to a Parisian apartment is what pilots the retail experience through its architectural references. The moulding patterns, trompe l’oeil lacquer panels, grey timber panelling and engraved Corian give stark references to the above and add the heritage factor to this store’s soul. All floors account for a unique experience as each department is treated individually interspersed with different creative inputs. Theatrical lighting which contributes to contrasting one space from another is the conveyor of drama and a glittery atmosphere. Vintage French decoratives and tastefully chosen motifs which are exclusive to each floor add to the Parisian elegance. These details appear strategically in wall panels, soffits, decorative grilles, mouldings, screens and display counters. The furniture and product displays as well were designed as per Parisian furniture styles