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Spitzenhaus

Zurich by Bel Epok

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Spitzenhaus

Zurich by Bel Epok

Year 2015
Zurich Switzerland

Bel Epok deftly transforms a landmark legacy into an exclusive modern emporium for premium care and fine fragrance products.

DESCRIPTION
from the architects' statement

"The new Spitzenhaus, which opened its doors at a prime Zurich address in early November 2015, is more than a conventional perfumery. The carefully planned concept treats fine cosmetic and perfume products as an aspect of cultural heritage. The handpicked collection of exceptional, highest-quality and artistically sophisticated brands is not so much bought in as curated.

Responsible for the complete store design concept and its implementation, Bel Epok has created a space that perfectly reflects the Spitzenhaus brand idea. Comingling the historical significance and existing architecture of the site with sleek and elegant interventions and purpose-built furnishings, the interior communicates the cultural value of the products and supports optimal, up-to-date service. The result is a unique and inspiring shopping environment that combines the solid splendor of a bygone era with the bright, clean and airy ease of today.

Culture as a core value, tradition as a point of departure. The client chose to keep the name Spitzenhaus in honor of the venerable establishment once housed in the premises: a late nineteenth century specialty store for fine lace goods. Because it is a listed building, Bel Epok had the added challenge of making sure all design interventions complied with binding renovation guidelines for landmark sites. For example, the original wood flooring and the egg-and-dart molding on the built-in cabinets could not be altered, with critical consequences for the overall choice of colors and materials.

The space came replete with large windows: how to create calm, intimate areas for the interaction with these very sensuous, personal products while retaining the openness? Inspired by the look of unrolled bolts of fabric, a set of “curtains” was created out of individual panels of stone, using the "chiffon" wall texture by Lithos Design. The effect is a solid partition that leaves top and side sections of the windowpanes visible. Building on the theme of old and new, here we have the unusual combination of the valuable, time-honored material stone in a dynamic, rippling surface form suggesting drapes that could be thrown open at any moment: a sophisticated solution with a smile.

The counter display elements were purpose-designed and built with several key factors in mind. Visually, they are reminiscent of old-fashioned sales counters, yet in a clean, modern interpretation. The display area within was designed to support an optimal, variable and distinctive Spitzenhaus visual merchandising concept for fine fragrances and premium care. Additionally, because the stockroom is not accessible directly from the sales floor the counter elements had to provide plentiful storage space within.

A streamlined furniture unit developed for the window displays draws customer focus to the product. The design is a tie-in to the overall store concept, providing a consistent platform for changing decorations. An integrated track and welting system provides a permanent basis for the creation and easy implementation of a wide range of deco scenarios.

A key design challenge was the need for specific brand presentations to be integrated into the unified concept. In keeping with the signature Spitzenhaus mix of tried and true/ fine and new, special zones were created to give star treatment to established premium brands La Mer and Bobbi Brown as well as to the exclusive artistic perfume brand Fueguia from Patagonia.

Thus Zurich is now home to a unique location where premium care products and fine fragrances can be experienced holistically and luxuriously in an ambiance that is cultivated yet refreshing and forward-looking. Thanks to the successful collaboration of Spitzenhaus and Bel Epok."

In addition to the "chiffon" 3d wall, for this project Bel Epok tasked also the Lithos Design Source division with creating all the other details in the same natural stone, such as the sales counter and the columns tops, in order to guarantee an overall homogeneity of the material in its finish and color.

textures

materials

details

Spitzenhaus
Design: Bel Epok GmbH.
Images courtesy of Bel Epok GmbH.
All rights reserved.

textures

materials

details

Spitzenhaus
Design: Bel Epok GmbH.
Images courtesy of Bel Epok GmbH.
All rights reserved.

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