H2R DESIGN was invited to bring HOB – a unique luxury shopping destination in Dalma Mall, Abu Dhabi – to life, through design. The award-winning design firm was entrusted develop an exclusive retail space curated as a collective of international and homegrown high-end brands accentuating an inclusive Emirati experience. Targeted for affluent shoppers, HOB houses distinctive and sought-after collections of perfumes, accessories and cosmetics in an upscale atmosphere.
The client’s vision for the design was to exude magnificence, refinement and grandiosity. H2R Design transformed that vision into a unique luxury retail destination honoring the local influences of the region, with the interiors thoughtfully planned with bold architectural details and regal colors. Aspired to create a space that appeals to all the senses, HOB captures the customer immediately as they approach the store, creating an impactful experience that continues to unfold in a journey through the store, leaving a strong impression long after visitors have left.
To create this unique space, H2R Design devised the design with prolific elements and materials that each tell a story. Intricate craftsmanship was required to interlace the distinct ingredients to present a retail space with smooth angles, soft edges and an awe-inspiring effect.
The collective space is abundant with rich timber and brassy metallics radiating refinement. The brass structure plays a significant role tying the whole store together.
The space is further interwoven with contemporary Carrara marble flooring with geometric patterns cut out in various shapes on the ground and shop’s front wall.
The entrance portal is made of an eco-resin textured surface that is back lit with LEDs, within a framework, to create an attractive inviting façade feature that is vibrant and lively.
The entrance has 5m large openings that allow the warm tones of the interior to glow through.
H2R Design chose to use eco-resin, a sustainable material which is non-toxic and based on natural plant and vegetable extracts or renewable resources. The technology used to develop it creates a long-lasting panel that rarely needs to be replaced and also has a beautiful appearance.
To reveal different depths and dimensions, the upper levels of the perfume displays are made of brass mesh with tube lights in the back while on the lower level cladding, sandwich emerald fabric is placed in between the glass panels with uplighters on the floor.
The drop ceiling structure is composed of custom shaped GRP panels that have a careful, well-hidden LED source, up lighting each ceiling panel. The appearance & effects create a beautiful diffused glow to the entire ceiling.
This creates a futuristic vibe throughout the space, reinforcing the elevated appeal. However, creating it posed challenges as the intricate work of the drop ceiling required trailing around every column.
The counters are made in dark oak with a ribbed metal panel to highlight the display of leather goods.
A variety of marble elements are prevalent throughout the shop including the use of black nero portoro marble, an authentic black marble with varying degrees of gold veining throughout the sedimentary rock as well as white Carrara marble, one of the most iconic luxury Italian marbles featuring shades of white and gray. These pieces of marble were quarried in the city of Carrara in the province of Massa and Carrara in the Lunigiana, the northernmost tip of Tuscany.
H2R Design was also tasked to design the logo. When developing the idea, they wanted to create an illustration of the shopper’s journey in a crisp and definitive manner. The result is a brandmark that bestrides the fine lines of refinement and playfulness in diagonal crossbars and within the ‘H’ and ‘B’. The monogram is a representation of the ‘H’ whilst at the same time evoking a sense of discovery and search for hidden treasures with an ‘X’ – inspired by ‘x-marks the spot’ of treasure maps.
From start to finish the original design evolved at every step of the way. The client’s product lines, and merchandise requirements shifted with time which led to the incorporation of new elements and revisions of other design aspects. However, the end result has successfully brought their vision into reality.