Aesop’s first New Zealand signature store opened in Newmarket, Auckland, a richly diverse neighbourhood first established as an early thriving cattle market. ECC’s lighting expertise was called upon to highlight the premium product in a typically chic, yet minimalist way in line with the brand’s identity.
Created in collaboration with Patterson Associates, the space was inspired by the region’s colonial heritage, and the robust, uncomplicated Kiwi lifestyle.
The interior design echoes the rustic simplicity of a traditional New Zealand washroom or Kiwi bach. Recycled Rimu timber folds up the walls, creating a more refined version of the unlined horizontal waling boards found in early colonial washrooms. Similarly, the large windows prompt an immediate relationship with the outside, allowing an abundance of natural light and fresh air to filter through the space. A large concrete tub sits as the centerpiece of the interior.
Architect Luke Douglas of Pattersons asked ECC to focus on highlighting the product without shadowing. While Aesop wanted the product brightly lit it was very clear that they didn’t want it to be washed out or given the ‘supermarket effect’. Therefore a high lux level was not planned for the whole shop, just the areas with the product.
The product and shelves dictated the placement of the spotlights, along with the restrictions of the concrete ceilings and low ceiling height. This created an organic placement of the spots in the absence of rigid lines. Some of the fittings were placed quite close to the beams so as not to attract attention.
Products used were UT spots by Flos with elliptical light distribution lens for the even spread of light, painted specifically for this project
Photographer: Simon Devitt