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Wag Hotels Retail Store

Fido gets the royal treatment in this cosmopolitan San Francisco pet boutique.




So much for chewed-up tennis balls as the toy de rigueur. It’s estimated that American pet owners spend over $7 billion per year on their pets. So lucrative is this business that hotels, boutiques and spas for pampered pooches and finicky felines have begun popping up everywhere.

Wag Hotels is a chain of modern kennels with a retail shop offering clothing, accessories, toys and just about anything else a “pet parent” could want. The boutique’s design, a partnership between Goren Architecture + Design (San Francisco) and Ritu Raj, co-founder of Wag Hotels, preserves the building’s original structure, including brick walls, stained concrete floors, open ceilings, steel trusses and skylights.

The design challenge existed within the store’s merchandise – a colorful assortment that design architect Leora Goren says “had to be accommodated without overwhelming the customer.”

To maintain a simple, modern-luxury look among open ceilings and concrete floors, designers used a palette of black and copper with oak, aluminum and frosted acrylic fixtures. Custom fixtures by B&N Industries (Burlingame, Calif.) complement the minimalist design and allow for a variety of merchandise display options.

“The style, while somewhat industrial,” Goren notes, “needed to be high-end enough to appeal to the cosmopolitan flair of San Francisco pet owners.”




Client: WAG Hotels Retail Store, San Francisco — Ritu Raj, owner and creative director

Design/Architect: Goren Architecture + Design, San Francisco — Leora Goren, principal

Design: Allyson Kovas Design, San Francisco — Allyson Kovas, principal

Architect of Record: Oris Design, San Francisco

General Contractor: Wag Hotels, Sacramento, Calif.


Graphic Design: Studio Picotee, San Francisco — Heather Landers, principal

Outside Design Consultant: Flack & Kurtz, San Francisco (lighting design)

Audio/Visual: Sentry Alarms, Oakland, Calif.

Ceilings: Armstrong Commercial Ceilings, San Francisco

Fixtures: B&N Industries, Burlingame, Calif.; Five Star Fixtures, Oakland , Calif.

Flooring: RP Coatings, Hayward , Calif.


Furniture: Target, Colma, Calif.; EQ3, San Francisco; CRI, San Francisco

Lighting: Graybar, Sacramento, Calif.

Signage/Graphics: Toll Graphics, Emeryville, Calif.; Ferrari Color, Emeryville , Calif.

Wood Wall Paneling: Five Star Fixtures, Oakland, Calif.

Sliding door hardware: Crown Hardware, South San Francisco, Calif.

Storefronts: Golden Gate Glass & Mirror, San Francisco

Custom Acrylic Shelving: Acrylic Art, Emeryville, Calif.

Photography: Tom Story, San Francisco




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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