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SUNDAY 23 NOVEMBER 2014

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Pronovias flagship store, New York, United States 
Monday 07 Apr 2008
 
Barcelona firm courts Big Apple 
 
Photographs Wade Zimmerman 
 
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Spanish bridal wear firm Pronovias opens flagship store in New York. 

Created by Josep Riu associate architect, and Emilio Rodríguez-Martos from GCA Arquitectos Asociados in collaboration with in-house architect Desirée Mas and Kenneth Park Architects, the PRONOVIAS building, which is destined to become the flagship of the company, is located in the heart of Manhattan between Fifth Avenue and Madison, alongside Saint Patrick's Cathedral.
The building has a ground floor plus six upper and two underground floors, with a total surface area of over two thousand one hundred square metres. The building plan separates the floors into different uses. The first three floors, with a surface area of over 730 m2, are allocated to the brand's own collections. The next two floors, covering 466 m2, are reserved for the more exclusive collections of the brand's designers. The sixth floor, which covers 224 m2, houses an exclusive showroom for presenting collections and hosting private fashion shows, and the offices are located on the seventh floor, of some 224 m2. The building also has two underground floors of 488 m2 allocated to storage space and installations.The plan stipulates the need for changing rooms, areas for attending to the public and areas for displaying the product. An "open-closed" floor plan has therefore been created with a very pure conception of space, dividing it into two differentiated zones. The more “opaque” zone hosts all of the various enclosed areas. The changing room areas (with a total of 25 changing rooms) have been grouped together with the communication hub, where there are two American-style staircases and an elevator. This allows the remaining space in each of the communal zones on each floor to be fluid, creating different settings. The wall opposite the changing area becomes an active element on each of the floors for the location of waiting areas, information areas, bridal wardrobes, accessory wardrobes, graphic murals, etc.The building plan provides for the main information area and customer enquiries on the ground floor. In the entrance, there is emphasis on the visual with an illuminated mural of images, an illuminated front window and the dual space that allows the visual union of the ground and first floors. Towards the back of this entrance area we find the reception desk, where the store's activities are organised.
Beyond this reception area we find information desks and a waiting area and beyond these the spiral staircase that communicates the first three floors. The insertion of a skylight means that the waiting area at the back enjoys natural daylight. The second and third floors are joined by the staircase, which allows customers to move easily between floors on their route to choosing all the necessary elements of the bridal gown. Due to their use by different clientele, the fourth and fifth floors are also united by another spiral staircase to allow their internal functioning independent from the other floors of the store. The façade is all glass to turn it into the box of light that is the advertisement of the brand itself. It is only broken by the vertical element that bears the name of the store and crowns of the building. This lighting effect is also reinforced by the installation of an RGB lighting system which provides interchanging patterns of light.
The façade repeats the "open and closed" floor plan concept by combining two types of glass, transparent and screen-printed with a linear pattern, depending on the needs of each floor. The sections are finished in a dark grey tone whilst the vertical element stands out from the glass surface due to its profile, projection and colour, it being finished in white sheet metal. The project employs a modern language in its finishes and an exquisite treatment of the materials to create a backdrop in harmony with the luxury and elegance required by the product on sale.The flooring alternates the use of materials, with both ivory cream marble and carpeting. The surfaces combine two types of wooden panelling, maple and wenge (light and dark), depending on the area. Wood is combined with mirrors or wall sections of pearlescent glass in some areas, such as at the back of the staircases in the dual space (the staircase joining the fourth and fifth floors) or on the sliding doors of the accessory wardrobes. Finally, the ceilings have been painted in a chocolate colour, highlighting individual points through isolated recessed white lighting fixtures with fluorescent interior lights.

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