Architecture and interiors firm Ministry of Design (MOD) has completed a 183sqm ‘ultra-performance’ retail store, named “Durasport” in Jewel Changi Airport. Featuring an immersive, futuristic and R&D lab environment for sports enthusiasts to try out the sportswear and equipment before buying them, the products were co-curated by MOD, and include the world’s lightest racing bicycle, heat-moldable customized cycling shoes, wet suits which minimize stretch resistance, adjustable alpine ski boots suitable for scaling uphill slopes as well as downhill skiing and a power breather for swimmers which enhances lap times.
Key to the in-store experience is a 3-stage retail strategy to ‘excite, immerse and (subsequently) convince’ the customer. To draw foot traffic for any new-to-market brand, the storefront design has to excite. Conceived to be more than a typical retail frontage with large display windows, Durasport’s facade is instead designed to appear as if in dynamic motion, conveying a sense of active, ultra-high performance sporting activities.
Tectonically, high-grade stainless steel is used in a disciplined and cohesive manner as the primary spatial material: an intentional reference to the typical laboratory R&D (research & development) environment in which the store’s innovative and high-performance products would have been developed. Highly customized and detailed display units illustrate the uniqueness of selected items and educate customers by “dissecting” them, putting them to the test or providing an X-ray view of the components that make up the finished product.
Building on this, distinctively designed hands-on experiential zones for cyclists, skiers, climbers and triathletes, allow customers to sample and test the sportswear or equipment. Aided by machines that simulate the activity they were designed for, this provides them with a visceral experience to cap off their knowledge of the product and to convince them of how it would help them up their game.
Specially designed to showcase Durasport’s varied merchandise across 4 key sports, the customized display system allows for extended flexibility across the product and size range. Shelves, racks or holders clip in and out of notched display walls and incorporate an integrated LED lighting system.
Rounding off Durasport’s holistic brand experience, MOD has also conceived the brand name, and designed the logo and collaterals such as the carrier bags, name cards, letterheads, envelopes, and internal signage to reflect the brand’s essential qualities: dynamism, innovation and ultra-high sporting performance.