Balenciaga Flagship Store
Clean Chic – Avant-Garde Retail Design for Balenciaga
The Balenciaga flagship store in the upscale Parisian shopping street Rue Saint-Honoré, was redesigned with an innovative concept by the Berlin architecture studio Gonzalez Haase AAS. Headed by Balenciaga’s creative director Demna Gvasalia, the planners have translated the desired “Berlin-Style” design theme into an extraordinary boutique interior design, which is step by step now finding its way into all fashion brand stores. For the new, exclusive “Clean Chic” at Balenciaga warehousing and production rooms of the couturier served as a source of inspiration: An ingenious system of connected polished stainless steel tubes allows the manual sliding of clothing items throughout the boutique to the changing rooms. The bare metal of the large, rugged stainless steel counters refers to workshops and their tailor stations, while the reflective aluminum surface of the ceiling complements the sophisticated and intriguing interpretation of the industrial look.
The monochrome color gamut of the selected surface materials forms the greatest possible contrast to the exclusive and colorful designer clothing, which is appropriately emphasized by a sophisticated lighting concept. Parallel narrow luminous lines run along the suspended channels to provide soft general lighting in neutral white light for the open space and create a spatial rhythm as a minimalistic graphic. In addition, the ceiling is appropriately accented with indirect light from the same channel, offering an impression of freshness and lightness. Directional spotlights mounted on the side of the channels bring warm white accent light to the designer goods. These LED spotlights, arranged in groups of three, form a powerful grid over the entire sales area and have been specially modified for the project so that their finish color naturally blends in with the architecture. With the help of finely tuned dimming adjustments, a balanced mix of horizontal and vertical illuminance is achieved, which at night presents itself as confident yet inviting through the generous glass facade.
“Our lighting concept was to underline the sophisticated, clean interior design with a minimal linear lighting aesthetic. Therefore, we integrated all lighting elements into the suspended beams and the furniture as well. The challenge was to choose the right light intensities to achieve a well-balanced hierarchy throughout the store.”
– Laura Sudbrock, Licht Kunst Licht AG