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Multi-brand cosmetics retailer HARMAY continues to make its mark across China with design-led retail spaces, and it’s in Chongqing where the latest flagship store opened its doors a little while ago. The company has secured a 1,331 sqm. (14,327 sq.ft.) unit at Park180 Cathay Pacific Plaza, a large revamped and upgraded shopping centre in the downtown district of Yuzhong which now specifically targets a young and savvy shopping demographic. Within the shopping centre, HARMAY is an anchor tenant, and as such, it’s one with a remarkable presence created with the help of Shanghai-based architecture practice and longtime collaborator AIM Architecture. The city is built on mountainous terrain, right at the confluence of the Yangtze and Jialing rivers, and the shopping centre happens to sit on a slope and most of it is constructed underground, including HARMAY‘s retail space which has two striking entrances, each framed by a bold red façade, situated on different sides of a sloped terrain.

Interestingly, inspiration was drawn from Chongqing’s historic air raid shelters which connected every corner of the city during World War II, resulting in a geometric vaulted retail space. The façade’s hue extends inside, adorning the walls, ceiling and floor which reinforces the tunnel vibe, but it’s the setting with a giant conveyor belt, generators and a range of industrial apparatus, taking cues from the many factories that were housed in such tunnels, which truly honour the city’s architectural legacy. The conveyor belt is used as a display for HARMAY‘s wide range of products, backed up by neatly arranged rows of shelving units. The new HARMAY store carries the brand’s own line of cosmetics fragrances, but also a selection of products from a wide range of exclusive foreign brands, including Graine de Pastel, Dermalogica, Botanist, Baum, Rose et Marius and SG79|STHLM.

Designed by AIM Architecture
Images © AIM Architecture
Photography: Bowen Gu


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