Compelling Curves

September 1998


Compelling Curves

A Honolulu retailer finds an unusual solution to a common problem

Some stores are better suited to bowling than browsing. That was the problem at La Pelle, an apparel retailer in Honolulu, HI. So the store engaged AM Partners, a design firm in Honolulu, to imbue the long, narrow space with a feeling of welcoming spaciousness. The solution won the retailer the coveted Store of the Year prize for 1998 from the National Association of Store Fixture Manufacturers. La Pelle beat out such heavy-hitters as Saks Fifth Avenue, Walt Disney Attractions Inc. and FAO Schwartz, each of which won a grand prize in one of the contest's 12 categories. The design is based on alluring curves in the ceiling, floor and fixtures that draw customers deep into the store. "A theme of overlapping curves and grids was used to soften the long, narrow space," says the company's contest entry form. "The curves of the casework are mimicked in the ceiling accent panels, cashwrap, floating curved luminaires, furnishings and, most importantly, in the serpentine carpeting that draws customers through the store." The entrance, meanwhile, is subdued and elegant. "The store facade is the epitome of simplicity, a simple wall of glass," AM Partners says. "Display spaces on either side of the recessed glass double doors highlight the imported high-end merchandise."

La Pelle won a national store design award for its simple, elegant entrance and a series of curves inside that draws customers through the narrow store.



Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.


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