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A Football FANtasy

German soccer team Borussia Dortmund’s new store is a utopia for BVB fans



Coinciding with the start of the 52nd season of Germany’s professional soccer league, Bundesliga, eight-time champion Borussia Dortmund (aka BVB) launched a new retail space in August 2014 designed to generate maximum excitement for the team’s passionate supporters.

BVB FanWorld is located at Westfalenstadion, the team’s arena in Germany’s North Rhine-Westphalia, and the largest stadium in the country. The store is just one part of a vast 21,000-square-foot building that houses ticketing for home and away matches, stadium tours, membership services, a Chaqwa café and a soccer court, school and children’s ball pit – all under one roof.

Previously, Borussia Dortmund had three smaller fan stores spread throughout the city. These have been consolidated into one massive “fan paradise” that offers the entire range of BVB gear. Merchandise spans two levels, each with 6400-square-foot showrooms decked out in the team’s trademark black and yellow livery.

With its flexible configurations, the store’s fixture systems not only enabled a wide variety of merchandise to be showcased; the high visibility they afford contributes to an open feel that helps mitigate the fervent energy of the crowds. Designer Johannes Lorkowski of D.S.D.5 Department Store Design Planungsges (Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany), elaborates, “Up to 50,000 fans may visit BVB FanWorld on a match day, so planning a smooth flow of traffic around the entrances and cash registers was critical to making the design a success.”

Harkening back to Dortmund’s roots in steel production, raw concrete and exposed ductwork create an “industrial chic” that is softened by warm timber finishes in the furniture and café. “It was very important that the lighting did not create a ‘department store’ look,” explains Katrin Cremer, from BVB’s merchandising department. “The levels are warm, but varied. Some spaces are brighter and others feel more intimate, with illumination techniques used to lead fans to highlighted attractions.”

Dynamic design elements, such as a curved feature wall, a yellow escalator, mannequins “frozen” in mid-play and a T-shirt printing area that looks like a small factory, amplify visitors’ anticipation and, according to Lorkowski, make BVB FanWorld a “must see” for every enthusiast.  


BVB Fanworld, Borussia Dortmund GmbH & Co., KGaA, Dortmund, Germany

Design Consultant
D.S.D.5 Department Store Design Planungsges GmbH, Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany: Johannes Lorkowski

MSM Meyer Schmitz-Morkramer Rhein GmbH, Köln, Germany

General Contractor
Körling Interiors GmbH & Co. KG, Dortmund, Germany

Visplay International GmbH, Weil am Rhein, Germany

Zumtobel Licht GmbH, Dornbirn, Austria


Photography: Courtesy of Visplay, Weil am Rhein, Germany



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