Prada Store, Soho NYC
This incredibly designed retail space is located just around the corner from the (tiny) New York City apartment I lived in during the mid-2000’s. The store was designed by influential Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas (b.1944) and opened in 2001. The space was previously occupied by the Guggenheim Soho and the museum signs remain. Cascading through the center of the store is a large sculptural wave made of zebrawood. At one end, the wave becomes steps, used either for displaying mannequins or for client seating. At the other end, the wave curves upward to street level with cages suspended above for merchandise. The volume of zebrawood is tempered by the open space above, creating a magnificent contrast. I spent my years in NYC working on luxury retail stores and this particular boutique has always been an inspiration, with its combination of unexpected architecture and mercantile function.