If design, retail, and branding is your thing, run, don’t walk, to check out this store. Gentle Monster, is the new flagship in the US for this super-cool Korean eyewear brand – it opened earlier this year. Every aspect conveys a singular philosophy of design and modern living. Leaving the store, I was literally breathless from the experience. Here are 3 things you need to know:
It’s sleek and contemporary but doesn’t feel stark or cold. Love the way they’ve used embedded digital imagery – reminds me of the digital art in the lobby of the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Vegas. The product display is also exceptional – they’ve constructed backlit aluminum shelving, which produces a floating effect – and as you walk thru the store, from front to back, the designs get more innovative and wild.
Hankook Kim told NYMag: “We set out on a mission to find and develop the perfect frame design that would fit perfectly and naturally on Korean people. Many celebrities found our designs and frames most appealing, for our product not only fit on them, they felt that the designs accentuated their features and looked great on camera.”
Kim works with two main materials: acetate and steel but also experiments with chrome, titanium, and other metals.
3. The back of store gallery features design installations – currently by Moooi (a Dutch lighting, carpet and furniture store that I covered back in March). The gallery will be reinstalled with new work for May.
The store’s creative manager, Minyeong Kim, is curating the art.
Location: 79 Grand Street (near Wooster), NYC
See below for more pics, including their collaboration and pop-up at the Opening Ceremony store on Howard Street.