Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Olympia Tile & Stone Showroom in Toronto, Canada by II BY IV DESIGN
June 25th, 2017 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: II BY IV DESIGN
As front-runners in the Tile and Stone industry, Olympia Tile has great influence over styling and demand, particularly within North America, but also worldwide.
Their flagship showroom occupies an entire block and features over 37,000 square feet of space open to the public, which is nothing short of grand. Employing natural stone sourced from the client’s product line, we created a contemporary, fashion-forward space with a bold architectural feel that references a gallery experience and high-end retail.
The client’s objectives for this project were direct: to create a new flag-ship store and to become the largest and best designed full service tile distributor in Toronto. Their overriding goal however was to strengthen their already-established “Olympia Tile” brand with an innovative new design resulting in attracting new customers and maximizing their retail outlet.
While the intent was to create the most spectacular showroom in the city, the renovation of the existing space posed many challenges. It was a constant challenge to determine where it made sense to allocate resources, ensuring the biggest impact on the customer experience without sacrificing or compromising the design intent.
To create a strong graphical impact, black and white finishes were used throughout the showroom; matte black walls with white lacquered free-standing fixtures, black porcelain floors with a beautiful book-matched white marble reception desk, a black painted ceiling with repeating white light troughs. This black and white high contrast effect is classic, allowing the product to ultimately be the star. As a secondary benefit, it also creates a strong sense of space and acts as intuitive wayfinding for consumers who may be visiting the showroom for the first time.
Given the size of the space and the high-demand nature of the retailer, the decision was made to stay open during the renovations. Knowing this upfront, II BY IV DESIGN worked with the construction team to create a detailed schedule addressing each of the retailer’s zones in a series of stages. The design team also worked closely with the client to identify areas that would have the biggest impact, and based on the area’s importance to the customer’s experience, assigned a dollar value for what was to be spent relevant to the project’s success. With this strategy, the design team was able to creatively and practically carry out their creative vision.
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