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In designing the first flagship store for legendary Italian marque Ducati, the designers intended to communicate Ducati's heritage, engineering history and new brand (designed by Massimo Vignelli). The message starts before shoppers even enter the store, with a digitally printed mural (derived from Ducati engineering drawings) appearing above the identity sign. The 3500-square-foot store is dominated by the showroom. Surfaces are curved and shiny, like the fairings of the motorcycles on display. The Ducati logo and heritage are everywhere, in the logo set in the polymer flooring, in the backlit identity-sign-cum-countertop that acts as a partition and in the wall recounting the factory's history and racing victories, which are updated by a scrolling LED board with current race results. Ducati Manhattan also deals in logoed clothing (from T-shirts to full racing leathers), helmets and parts.

The custom fixtures are as industrial as the rest of the store, with perforated-metal backwalls and wood shelving meant to recall packing crates. These fixtures are also the key to the marque's branding concept in multibranded environments. Known as the “Ducati Corner,” the fixtures will provide a backdrop for the bikes amidst the clutter of other motorcycles. Another section of the showroom includes a window that allows customers to watch as mechanics work on motorcycles in the service bay. Incandescent lamps in fixtures reminiscent of a mechanic's “trouble light” illuminate the area without creating unnecessary glare from the product's shiny surfaces. Ducati Manhattan is the first of a series of flagship stores that will roll out in major U.S. and overseas urban centers in the next few months.

Design: Gensler (New York City office), Santa Monica, Calif.–John Bricker, creative director; Mark Morton, design director; Robert Cataldod AIA, project director; Robin Fritzsche, project manager; Gus Hinojosa, senior designer; Christian Uhl, project architect/designer; Lisa Van Zandt, designer; Lisa Chu, project architect; Kamol Prateepmanowong, designer; Liz Bowdle, designer Lighting Design: Barbara Horton Lighting Design, New York City General Contractor: F.J. Sciame Construction, New York City Flooring: Stonehard, Pharr, Texas Lighting: Luminary Tools Inc., Brooklyn N.Y. Fixturing: Farmington Displays Inc., Farmington, Conn. Signage/Graphics: Duggal Color Projects, New York City Cladding: American Acrylic Corp. West Babylon, N.Y. Photography: Scott Francis, New York City



MasterClass: ‘Re-Sparkling’ Retail: Using Store Design to Build Trust, Faith and Brand Loyalty

HOW CAN WE EMPOWER and inspire senior leaders to see design as an investment for future retail growth? This session, led by retail design expert Ian Johnston from Quinine Design, explores how physical stores remain unmatched in the ability to build trust, faith, and loyalty with your customers, ultimately driving shareholder value.

Presented by:
Ian Johnston
Founder and Creative Director, Quinine Design

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