An insulated box nestled into a ground floor space facing Miami Beach’s Lincoln Road, the design for the newest Alchemist concept store allows patrons to disconnect from the constant motion, sound, and heat of the surrounding environment through the use of specific materials that create a language of motion, color, surface and light.
Melamine foam envelops the ceilings and walls, acting as a buffer for the surrounding structure and providing a soft, tactile quality. A symmetric and rhythmic pattern of saw-tooth walls is accentuated by hidden LED light bands that produce a choreographed and changing color composition that appears and disappears behind the foam surface. At the rear of the store, the plastic materiality of the main space transitions to abstracted representations of the natural landscape as wood floors, exposed wood beams and mirrored surfaces create a separate and intimate changing area. This space frames a video installation on the back wall by contemporary artist Paris Kain of tropical environments, the ocean and sunsets.
The design for this concept store is nearly opposite to the design of the original Alchemist boutique, also designed by Rene Gonzalez on the 5th floor of the same Herzog and de Meuron parking structure. While the first store blurs the line between interior and exterior with floor-to-ceiling windows and mirrored surfaces that reflect the sky above and street below, the idea for the second boutique is instead an enveloping and protective, cocoon-like space.