Jaklitsch/Gardner Architects Reinvents Gangnam Style

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For a posh new fashion and housewares boutique in Seoul’s Gangnam District, the firm maximizes a minimalist palette with unique custom display features.

My Boon is an offshoot of the Korean multibrand retailer Boon the Shop, and it carries everything from high-end fashion to modern furniture. When New York’s Jaklitsch/Gardner Architects was called in to design its new outpost inside a 622-square-metre space on the ground floor of a shopping and cultural complex in Gangnam District, the firm collaborated with Milan Vukmirovic, the shop’s creative director (formerly of Trussardi), to create an interior worthy of the luxury shop.

The shop is divided into three sections: a juice bar and cafe, an expansive space for fashion and footwear, and a gallery-like area for personal and home accessories and furnishings. Since you can enter the shop from either side, your experience can begin or end at the cafe, positioned at the street entrance – a thoughtful touch for customers seeking respite from the frenzy of labels vying for their attention. Here, you can shop for Balenciaga’s latest “it” bag, an Iitala vase and Aesop skincare all in one go.

Jaklitsch/Gardner defined each enclave using a natural palette of black, white and earthy hues, sometimes employing delicate shifts in material. For instance, the firm employed end-grain wood flooring that changes colour in each department. It clad the walls in the retail areas in hand-troweled concrete and those in the cafe in salvaged rough-sawn wood. An expansive black granite counter services the fashion arm while a bar-height white marble counter adorns the cafe.

The firm also devised interior fittings – including steel-and-glass vitrines that show off goods at eye level and display tables made of compressed paper and glass – in order to highlight the well-appointed selection of merchandise.

But the most striking custom feature is the stack of concrete planks that take centre stage in the fashion zone. The platform elevates furnishings by Cappellini, Meritalia and Knoll, which share space with mannequins dressed in ready-to-wear collections by such notable fashion houses as Maison Martin Margiela and Dries van Noten. The entire plinth is adjustable and can be also double as seating.

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