Tiffany & Co. unveiled a new design for the Ginza building that houses its Tokyo flagship store. The design is the creation of Japanese architect Kengo Kuma and his design firm Kengo Kuma Associates. Kuma said that his design inspiration is “a jewelry-like architecture that echoes Tiffany’s visual identity.”
“It is a dream for us to have Mr. Kuma involved in this project. His reputation in Japan and the international design community is outstanding, and his architectural vision can be seen in recognizable buildings around the world,” said Michael Christ, president of Tiffany & Co. Japan. “Kuma’s signature technique of interpreting classic touchstone elements to inform his modern and innovative vision is a perfect expression of Tiffany style.”
The exterior design will be composed of honeycomb glass panels that will be mounted to the building. Kuma conceives this image as a “facet cut surface that generates a diversity of light” and “an elegant and brilliant façade that celebrates the city.”
The panels of glass will be canted like facets on a diamond. During the day they will reflect the bustling Ginza streetscape. In the evening they will be lit to add a new dynamic to the dramatic evening streetscape of the Ginza district.
The interior of the Tiffany store, which occupies three floors of the building located at 2-7-17 Ginza, will incorporate elements of the exterior design with an emphasis on rich textures and colors to convey a contemporary atmosphere. A two-story atrium entrance and customer entertainment spaces wil be the focal point in the design. There will also be a permanent installation area for showcasing rare icons from the vaults of the Tiffany & Co. Archives.
The store will have the broadest selection of Tiffany designs in Japan. Among the array of TIFFANY & CO. collections that will be offered are the jeweler’s diamonds and engagement jewelry in platinum and 18K gold settings; collections of exclusive Tiffany designers Elsa Peretti, Paloma Picasso, Jean Schlumberger and Frank Gehry; watches; fine and sterling silver jewelry; men’s accessories and gifts.
The company had purchased the land and building housing the store in 2003 in order to secure Tiffany’s long-term presence at that prime location, and has always had the intention to renovate and sell-leaseback the property. The store will be open throughout the period of renovation which is scheduled to be completed in November 2008.