The spirit & ambience of Retail Design

There are very few retail stores that capture the essence and DNA of the global success of luxury skincare brand Aesop. Granite covers almost every surface inside this Sydney Aesop store, designed to look like a rocky coastline. Situated amongst the busy, shop-lined streets of Sydney’s central business district, Aesop Pitt Street was created to slow down the pace of passersby.

The studio Snohetta sought to create a space that, though large in scale, still embodies the spirit and ambience of what Aesop is recognized for – a retail space of calm and reflection that allows one to focus for a moment on oneself.

Granite has been used to line almost every surface of the store which is Aesop’s largest retail space to date . Vertical grooves have then been carved out of the stone walls to delineate rows of shelves, which openly display Aesop’s products. A block of silver metal also forms a huge sink where staff can test and demonstrate products for customers.

In the world of online, bricks and mortar retail design needs to work harder to create tangible experiences that simply can’t be experienced online.