The vision for the project was to give an upscale jewelry boutique – Palladio. Located in the heart of downtown Vancouver – a fresh, forward-looking design that propelled the store into a new exciting chapter. At the same time, the intent was to respect the history and pedigree of the Palladio brand, with a design that is classic and timeless, even while it leverages contemporary technology and design thinking.
The notion of a precious jewelry box was the start of design inspiration, creating an exclusive shopping experience that would showcase – like a jewelry box does – the precious product, but at the scale of a store. The interiors were also inspired by the elegant existing space and its sophisticated downtown location.
A key driver for Palladio’s redesign was a shift to a new location across the street from the prior store, and a desire to integrate a dedicated area for the premium brand Rolex. This ‘store in a store’ concept was an interesting design challenge, to ensure both the Palladio and Rolex brands could coexist harmoniously in the new space.
Meticulous research into the technical aspects of lighting for the displays and general ambiance was undertaken; many of the new technologies in lighting were not available when the original Palladio store was designed. Kreel wanted the design of the new location to capitalize on these advances. In addition to the high output 5,000K LED display lighting, every detail was considered to optimize the presentation of merchandise and remove superfluous elements. This included Starfire glass used in the display cases, a high-clarity glass with very low amounts of iron, which eradicates the greenish-blue tint that is typically seen in glass and which could detract and distort a buyer’s perception of the store’s product.
A nod to the design of the existing store was made in the selection of the exotic wood Afromosia for millwork, which is an extremely elegant yet durable species of wood from Africa, and shares the same richness and elegance as the Anigre wood used in the previous iteration of Palladio. The palette of the new store is predominantly warm wood, and bronze metals complemented by premium Calacatta marble, a distinctive marble of whites and golds, imported from Italy. Bronze coloured mirrors create reflections and give depth to the environment, and bronze metal accents include the decorative screens, reminiscent of links in a bracelet, and comprised of a repeating pattern of the Palladio ‘P’.