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REPLAY FLAGSHIP STORE, MILAN
Thursday 06 Oct 2011
The new Replay flagship store in Milan is located is in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, just a few steps from the Duomo and where the retail stores in Milan are concentrated.
The first important choice was that of creating an island, physically and mentally, in the urban context. The idea was to create an internal garden, a vast space that welcomes people walking by, offering them shelter and respite from the city.
Whereas the market dictates that all merchandise must be densely compressed into a store, the Replay Milan store proposes a different approach. The elements that surround the customer are monumental walls of plants, 11m high, and a waterfall that runs the entire length of the store. These visual and tactile elements are the starting point from which to build, or rather rebuild, the relationship between man and the natural world, offering a rich sensory experience.
To access the main retail space, you have to cross the garden along a suspended walkway. This act of passing through a void reiterates the sensation of curiosity. Arriving in the main retail space, you find yourself in an environment built with wood and steel, natural materials sculpted by man, where items are displayed within library walls more than six metres high.
A vast wall of denim displays the wide variety of models offered by the brand, celebrating the craft traditions that has always characterized it. The theme of the wall is a recurring one: green wall, water wall, walls of wood and of steel. The steel wall at the Corsia de' Servi entrance appears to crumble as if it were made in lumps of stone, a matrix that changes face constantly and is never the same twice.