- Design Principals: Wendy Saunders, Vincent de Graaf
- Project Manager: Cindy Xu
- Project Architect: Shirley Woo
- Interior Team: Steve Do, Noel Wu, Ewa Szajda, Chen Yuan, Emilio Wang, Yan Jiao
- Ffe Team: Lili Cheng
- The Client: ZUCZUG
- City: Shanghai
- Country: China
Text description provided by the architects. Interiors are not simply staged scenes behind closed doors. At AIM, we believe a good interior can be a catalyst for change. It is rooting itself in the urban fabric, creating life and influencing city culture. The PARK Yanping Road presents this integration of life, local character, and street culture, blurring indoor and outdoor boundaries. Unlike the current trend of centralizing social life around The CBD, the PARK Mall, hidden within a bustling Jing’an city block, brings a new form of a mini department store. The brand seeks its products broadly, without pretense. It calls to mind a modern-day Wunderkammer, where various objects and artifacts are stored, admired, and celebrated for their eclectic-ness and rarity.
Initially not connected, the main space has three floors, high ceilings, and a forest of columns. We were strongly inspired by traditional Chinese parks, where winding paths lead the visitor to secluded areas. The result is a voluptuous staircase and walkway that claims the space and spills out to a suspended pond midheight.
The materials and furniture speak to the relationship between nature and industry. They also help highlight another important purpose—Play. The space is full of unexpected charm. Standard park objects become transformed in the interior. Fiberglass, a material more commonly used for slides and park playthings, is used for the staircase. Rubber lining, asphalt-like flooring, and other traditional outdoor materials find new purpose indoors. Circular park seating is turned into shelves around the tree-like columns.
Outside, large oval planter seat, where represents heaven. The organic shape is like a pond in a traditional Chinese garden. Of course, not everything is so traditional. The staircase is as inspired by a suburban skate bowl as much as it is an austere garden, but this is a park after all — shouldn’t there be both? The honeycomb aluminum board is light but strong; on the surface, overlay wood veneer and marble add the feeling of nature and industry.
The dressing room design comes from Dutch public street furniture. Like the other furniture, it represents street objects. All things placed together result in an intriguing, contemporary sense of life—an inversion of the outdoors indoor. Likewise, the clothes drying poles, street signs, fitting rooms, and bamboo chairs outside the store all resemble the timelessness of Shanghai street life.
Many interior spaces try to convey a sense of distance, whereas PARK is a non-serious expression. The PARK design reimagines and recreates ordinary items and ideas. It is a stage for life, blending into the streets and truly integrates the local community and neighborhoods.