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07.26.2013
Open> Knoll
Architecture Research Office designs a showroom to highlight the brand's classic products.
Courtesy Knoll

Knoll
1330 Avenue of the Americas
New York
Tel: 212.343.4000
Designer: Architecture Research Office (ARO)

Knoll has entered the realm of retail with a new store located steps from the Museum of Modern Art. The 2,700-square-foot space—most recently occupied by a bank—was relatively raw, enabling New York-based ARO to deliver a well-established brand message through thoughtful material choices and strategic product placement. Three main zones across two levels were defined to house furnishing displays by use, rather than product category.

“The biggest challenge was how to get the baseline of classic Knoll products without cluttering the space,” said ARO partner Stephen Cassell. A sunken entry level gives way to a glass-encased seasonal vignette, while a more permanent product display is housed in the back of the shop. A neutral wall of gray lacquered shelving and heather-hued FilzFelt highlights iconic pieces from Florence Knoll, Eero Saarinen, and Marcel Breuer behind a retractable sheer by Irma Boom. An adjacent feature wall in Knoll’s signature red holds new releases from KnollTextiles. Translucent resin lettering embellishes floor-to-ceiling glazing on the second floor; an inverse echo of the interior brand wall. Darkly stained end grain wood flooring lends an inviting, residential feel to the space.

Emily Hooper