Sparkling new stores, built from the ground up, tend to get the most attention. But renovations are just as important to retailers, who already own the real estate (or have repurposed somebody else's) and want to give existing customers an added reason to stop by or lure new ones in.
In recognition of the vital role that such makeovers play, VM+SD created the annual Retail Renovation Competition, reviewing projects before the updating begins, in progress and upon completion. Now in its second year, the competition's judges gathered at the offices of FRCH Design Worldwide in Cincinnati for a review of entries, and named the 0575 Restaurant in Italy the overall winner.
The restaurant, which is in the Tuscan town of Sansepolcro – and whose named is derived from the region's telephone area code – was designed by the local firm of Bartolini/Lanzi Architects. The sumptuous eatery is housed in a barrel-vaulted 1940s tobacco warehouse that more recently served as a clothing outlet store. Judges lauded the restaurant renovation for its detailing and use of elegant materials. "They took some risks, but also respected the existing structure," one noted.
The other winners represent a broad range of retail formats: a luxury specialty store, a furniture showroom, a grocery store, a yacht dealership and a roadside C-store. Coverage of the winning spaces appears on the following pages, and an awards ceremony and presentation will take place during the International Retail Design Conference, September 6-8, in San Francisco.
Judges in the competition were: Nadine King, design manager, Luxottica Retail Group (Cincinnati); Steve McGowan, vp/creative director, FRCH Design Worldwide (Cincinnati); Ken Pray, coordinator, store design, Kroger Co. (Cincinnati); and Robert Rich, principal, BHDP Architecture (Cincinnati).
To find out more about VM+SD's Retail Renovation Competition, or to enter next year's contest, contact assistant editor Lauren Mang at 513-263-9380 or firstname.lastname@example.org.