The Planet St James project was the interior fit-out of a purpose built 1,000 square metre interior garden centre and its success is a firm vindication of both the innovative design direction and the equally innovative brief provided by the clients, Palmers.
The project brief was to transform the traditional model of a garden centre into a new generation 21st century lifestyle precinct and, importantly, a 12 month operation adding many more product lines, while maintaining the inherent sense and relaxed essence of a Garden Centre model.
While 1,000 square metres would appear to be a lot of space to work with it was still important to maximise the usable space, and the impression of the space, and this is maximised by locating the office on a mezzanine level.
The typical issue in such a large interior tenancy space is to ensure that all areas within the fit-out maintain vitality; to encourage the customer to move through the full shopping experience without missing anything. To address the necessarily deep plan, major features were designed for the far end of store, The ‘Chairwall’ and the ‘Greenwall’ to draw the eye right to end of the fit-out. Peripheries in the plan are provided with a friendly curved fixturing component to humanise the environment and provide a point of difference and to remove the difficult to work with traditional corner fixturing configuration. Retailing stories are divided with curving wall fixturing, rather than with the more common separating features.
F+D=A took care to also develop unique joinery elements including striking leafshaped point of sale units and florist units to provide a further point of difference and standout in a ‘crowded’ market sector.
The development of the colour scheme was a team effort that aimed to produce a colourful shopping environment that would complement an inherently colourful stock. The colour direction was sourced from nature; greens, yellow, red and browns, in addition to crisp white to ensure that the scheme maintained a modern clean base. Colour combinations were also influenced by the brief to provide a friendly feminine touch to the environment. ‘Natural light’ provided via a generous roof plane window was also a very important part of the scheme.
The chosen colour palette was applied to all aspects of the interior finishes, including paint, with the generation of Resene custom colours including Resene Planet Dark Green, Resene Planet Light Green and Resene Planet Magenta, in addition to Resene Double Alabaster. The colours were also generated in unique and playful ways with other elements such as an Ivy Leaf vinyl flooring, bold leafy wallpaper, whitewash ply shelving and work surfaces. The typically harsh raw grey concrete flooring was softened with a green/yellow stain that importantly did not remove the serviceability of the concrete finish; necessary in a space where often heavy stock and water are common.
The design team were very careful to ensure that the colour scheme, in the form of elements such as painted curved bulkheads, product backing boards, coloured bands as well as a mirrored element, was expressed up to the full extent of the perimeter walls, rather than a half empty ‘bath line’ approach typical of many large warehouse style retail fitouts. They also ensured that this same fun environment, colours and materials palette was represented in the bathrooms too.
Resene Double Alabaster
Architectural specifier: F+D=A
Building contractor - structure: Livingstone
Client: Garry Stone, Palmers Planet
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