JHP Design unveils ‘dynamic’ response to fifth South Korean Hyundai department store brief

JHP Design is working on its fifth department store for Hyundai, in South Korea. Hyundai Department Store Korea appointed the consultancy to redesign the outlet in May, following a five-way credentials pitch against three US and one other UK design group.

The radical revamp includes adding two storeys to create a 14-storey, 40 000m2 building. JHP is also reassigning three floors of offices as retail space.

The store is located in the centre of the city of Ulsan, which JHP joint managing director Steve Collis describes as ’incredibly prosperous, containing as it does the world’s largest oil refinery, biggest car plant and shipyards’.

JHP reports that Hyundai has briefed the consultancy to communicate ’dynamism, confidence, youth, sophistication and authority’ in its design.

’Ulsan’s population is young and dynamic, having a high number of entrepreneurs who have moved there to service the huge manufacturing base,’ says Collis. JHP intends to use hi-tech new materials produced in the city to create the store’s interiors, including ’interactive glass, new types of laminates and polycarbonates’.

Collis is aiming for a ’modern, moody and dynamic’ aesthetic, but emphasises that the project is at such an early stage that it is ’hard to say what the interiors will look like yet’.

Nevertheless, JHP has proposed that the building should have a Zen-inspired roof garden with a glass-bottomed fish pond viewable from the champagne bar below. The food offer will include about six restaurants, including a basement gourmet food hall and a full dining offer on the 12th floor. JHP will name and brand each dining experience, including a Japanese, Chinese and European restaurant. ’The interior of each will be very distinct from the others,’ says Collis.

Hyundai Ulsan will also have the ’usual array’ of departments, including lingerie, fashion, home, cosmetics and luxury brands, says Collis.
The redesign of Hyundai Ulsan is due for completion in August 2011.

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