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Luxury fashion retailer Coach opens flagship store in Tokyo

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International architectural practice OMA have designed luxury handbag brand Coach’s newest flagship store. Designed by Shohei Shigematsu and OMA’s New York office, the store opened on Omotesando, a prominent retail corridor in Tokyo, Japan.

The flagship design features a façade of 210 stacked, translucent display boxes in a herringbone pattern of vertical and horizontal orientation that accommodate the brand’s wide repertoire of products. In addition to the façade, OMA designed a “floating” tower of 105 illuminated acrylic units that encase the store’s central stair, drawing pedestrians to the upper level. Consolidating the display on the facade and circulation creates a condition in which the shopper is continuously surrounded by Coach’s products, while simultaneously liberating floor space.

Founded in 1941, Coach began as a leather goods retailer, displaying their products in a single row of library like, wooden shelving that categorised their handbags and wallets. The brand’s repertoire has since expanded to include a full range of lifestyle merchandise including outerwear, footwear, jewelry, watches and sunglasses, which are now sold in a variety of retail environments from specialty boutique to department store.

Inspired by the clarity of Coach’s original, systematic filing retail strategy, OMA designed a modular display unit that is flexible enough to accommodate the specific needs of each product and retail environment. The spatial possibilities of this highly functional system reinforce Coach’s mission to represent ‘logic and magic.’ For the first iteration at a kiosk within Macy’s department store at Herald Square, acrylic display units were assembled into a fl oor-to-ceiling high, “V” shaped wall. Products appear to fl oat amidst maintained views to the accessories floor beyond.

Coach’s ninth Japan flagship is a two-storey, corner site on Omotesando, a prominent retail corridor in Tokyo. In comparison to the increasingly decorative elevations that characterize Omotesando, OMA’s design integrates display into the façade, seamlessly communicating the brand’s presence from the inside out. The display units are stacked in a herringbone pattern of vertical and horizontal orientation to facilitate a range of curation scenarios. Dimensioned to accommodate Coach’s standard merchandising elements (ex.mannequins, busts, bags), the unit measures1800 mm x 520 mm. Frosted glass that provides shelving within the store is further articulated to the façade as louvers.

Viewed from the exterior, the double-height storefront presents an uninterrupted survey of Coach’s full collection in a single view, with a dedicated frame for each product. Viewed from the interior, the display unit’s translucency creates an active backdrop for merchandise, filtering Omotesando’s streetscape into the shopping experience.

In addition to the façade, OMA designed a floating tower of illuminated units that encase the store’s central stair, seamlessly connecting the women’s first floor and men’s second level. Consolidating the display on the facade and circulation creates a condition in which the shopper is continuously surrounded by product, while simultaneously liberating floorspace. In the evenings, the circulation tower illuminates the façade as a dynamic, 24-hour window display from within.

This is OMA’s second collaboration with Coach – following a kiosk designed for Macy’s in New York – and the office’s first built work in Tokyo.

Images copyright of OMA

About

Assif is a luxury travel and design aficionado currently working as a BBC content producer. He holds an MA in journalism from the University of Leeds. He is partial to tea and cake - Yorkshire Tea Gold Blend please. His favourite trips include island hopping in the Seychelles, a mountain escape in Kashmir and getting lost in Hong Kong.

Assif is the current editor of Adelto Magazine. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram: @journolista.

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April 17, 2013 | Property | View comments

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