Occupying the first and second floor of 251 Park Avenue South – a Flatiron District building that, on its upper floors, houses the company’s corporate offices, as well as the offices and showrooms of subsidiary brands Maharam and Geiger – Herman Miller’s new retail environment resembles a well-curated home more than a retail store.
The 557-square-metre space has been devised as a modular series of living environments, designed by an expansive team led by Stephen Floyd and Jennie Maneri, with exterior work by architect Vincent Bandy. An entryway flows into a formal living room, then gives way to a home office, bedrooms, family room and kitchen.
The furnishings are both display and inventory, and represent a blend of current and vintage Herman Miller designs, including a rare, 1962-era DFH chair by George Nelson & Associates and an Alexander Girard mirror with an orange, red, purple and gold surround. Current Herman Miller accessories, furniture and lighting are joined by a curated collection of products by other vendors, including Danskina rugs, kitchen and tabletop accessories from Deborah Ehrlich, and lighting by Wästberg.
One of the store’s most striking features is a nearly four-metre-high custom installation of a vintage Comprehensive Storage System by George Nelson, acquired through various vintage vendors. It’s one of the few items not for sale.
The company says the Park Avenue South location is an ideal site for its move into direct-to-consumer retail, and part of its overall transition to a premium lifestyle brand. The store is the second bricks-and-mortar location for the manufacturer; the first Herman Miller retail store opened in Tokyo in December 2010.