Aesop recently opened its second Berlin signature store, on Fasanenstraße in the city’s West. Created in collaboration with Snøhetta, the design for the 93-square meter space was inspired by the historical context of the neighborhood.
Taking cues from several performing arts institutions nearby, including Theater des Westens and Berliner Schaubühne, the interior subtly alludes to the trappings of theatrical drama. This influence is first evident in nine intermittently placed Oak pillars that ascend from openings in the floor, appearing like steadfast dramatis personae awaiting a protagonist’s entrance to the stage.
By day, they are open to scrutiny, illuminated from above and below to function as product display cabinets for Aesop’s product ranges; by night, they are closed, supporting columns – an integral architectural element. In this duality, they apply a fresh approach to the traditional techniques of carpentry and joinery.
The pillars’ considered positions are intended to guide clients through the space, with movement and interaction directed by curiosity – inviting investigation of their contents from one to the next. Storage cabinets concealed within the Oak flooring further emphasise the notion of the retail space as a theatrical set; as does the open façade, which frames the space and permits onlookers a clear view.
Vintage fittings, including brass handles on the cabinets and front door, add textural variation and discreet material accents.
Visitors can explore and select from a complete range of skin, hair and body care products, distinguished by botanical and laboratory-generated ingredients of the highest quality. The store’s trained consultants are able to offer advice about those best suited to individual needs.