A mega city that’s brimming with luxury, a brand that’s synonymous with fashion and an architect who is a monarch in retail design… Fendi’s newest store in New York designed by Peter Marino is a perfect merger of three.
High on fashion, high on design and high on style… that’s how one would describe the Fendi flagship store at Madison Avenue in New York that opened its doors in February 2015. The store is a culmination of Fendi’s continuous research on the high standards in store design, highlighting its deep Roman roots. The space spanning 380 sq mtrs (approx 4,000 sq ft) was completely revamped to suit the brand’s demeanor. For such a prestigious project, the brand called on the eponymous architect Peter Marino to lend his expertise. A name to reckon with as far as retail architecture is concerned — by designing stores for iconic brands like Louis Vuitton and Chanel to name a few — Peter was the apt choice. The architect’s design contributions in the areas of commercial, cultural, residential and retail architecture have redefined modern luxury worldwide… emphasizing materiality, texture, scale, light and the constant dialogue between interior and exterior.
Peter channeled the company’s Roman background for his design in this brand new store, using materials like Travertine, leather and fur. The classic Italian limestone first makes an appearance on the boutique’s facade, which mimicks Fendi’s new headquarters at the Palazzo della Civilta Italiana in Rome. The facade features vertical soaring pillars set between curvilinear sweeping arches.
Then in true Peter Marino style, myriad textures fill the store’s interiors. The boutique surprises visitors with a calibrated play on chromatic architectural and material contrasts, and displays a combination of textures. Finishes include burl wood, hand-applied plaster and artistic lacquered walls. Contrasting these bold textures, the architect keeps to a calm palette of beiges and browns with accents of gold, silver, and white. It brings a welcome touch of Italian flair to Madison Avenue.
Inside, Fendi’s wares are arranged over two floors and set against a backdrop of exotic woods, marble and fur — an aesthetic that Peter describes as “a beautifully abstracted version of Rome… of a Roman holiday.” On the ground floor — decked out in marble and petrified Indonesian wood — women’s accessories (bags, small leather goods, shoes, fashion jewellery, charms and eyewear) find their place. A niche wall in the iconic Baguette area features an arresting wall of hand woven gold foiled leather. That’s not all. To create more drama (and take a visitor by surprise), a wow-inducing display of the brand’s bags and furs in miniature versions were introduced in this wall. A ‘handmade’ atmosphere permeates the space, reflecting the highest level of craftsmanship, obsession for details and the overall heritage of the brand.
Visitors are led up to the first floor by a meandering Palisander wood lined and Selleria leather stitched staircase to the ready-to-wear, furs, watches and a VIP room. Fur tablets, the artisans usually created in the fur atelier to test fur workmanship, line the stair like a fur totem, creating a striking contrast with the wood on the stair wall. The wood grain subtly also evokes fur, giving continuity with the other side of the floor, where the fur room is placed. This room is characterized by walls made of a lacquered parchment patchwork, while the ready-to-wear area features white sculptural wall panels, giving a stunning tri-dimensional effect. The VIP area is characterized by a rippled leather wall.
Whether it is smart display of money-making objects up-front, fitting rooms that have a residential setting, decor that exemplifies luxury and of course, the Roman architecture… the Fendi store at Madison Avenue is a hot-spot for fashionistas and connoisseurs of all-things beautiful.
To design the Fendi store which reflects the brands rich heritage and legacy.
Floor Marble, Indonesian wood Walls Gold foiled leather, hand-applied plaster and burl wood
Project Fendi Store Location Madison Avenue, New York Area 380 sq mtrs Principle architect Peter Marino
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