Having completed aesop stores in Oslo, Dusseldorf, and Singapore, among other locations, snohetta has now opened an outlet for the Australian skincare brand in London. the 108-square-meter retail space — which is also the practice’s first permanently built project in England — is located in the capital city’s affluent chelsea area, and, according to the design team, is ‘inspired by the contextual relevance of the location combined with an influence of futuristic elements’.
Titled ‘aesop duke of york square’, the snohetta-designed interior is characterized by classic archetypes, a pale red color palette, and an assortment of stainless steel elements. 12 arches stretch out towards the perimeter walls from a centralised column. clad in a clay based plaster, the arches help delineate the space, while integrated illumination emphasizes a graduated effect. the walls and ceiling are finished in the same way, establishing a warm and welcoming atmosphere inside the store.
Contrasting the royal rose-color, a circular shaped sink expands outwards from the centralized column. as with all aesop stores, the sink — which has been made from polished stainless steel and glass fiber — is the interior’s natural meeting point. appearing as a ‘hovering water mirror’, the central element has been designed to reflect the light and colors of the pale red ceiling above.
The contrasts created by the rough surfaces of the walls against the soft, polished expression of the clear stainless-steel shapes, the play with colour gradients, as well as the changes in light throughout the space, all underline a sense of depth to the design,’ explains snohetta. ‘combined with the traditional arches and futuristic elements such as the sink, the design aims to trigger customer’s sense of curiosity.’