AUDEMARS PIGUET SHOWROOMEast Hampton, New York, USACompleted: December, 2018Square feet: 3,500East Hampton is known for its ease and relaxation – a beach destination where visitors like to forget about their daily lives and slow down. Studio Galeon wanted to impart this sense of leisure in the East Hampton location of Swiss timepiece maker Audemars Piguet, without compromising its integrity as a luxury brand. We approached this unique combination through a number of strategies. First, we saw an opportunity in creating a central element that would invite visitors into the space. We worked with a local millworker to clad the space’s existing steel support columns in white oak paneling to form a colonnade whose arches mirror the windows of the building’s facade. In addition to functioning as an introduction for incoming visitors, the colonnade subdivides the elongated space into a series of intimate rooms or “nests” where salespeople can have more direct and personal conversations with visitors or where private consultations can take place. Studio Galeon worked with Audemars Piguet’s store design team in Switzerland to ensure that all store elements cohered with the brand identity. We interpreted it to fit the beachtown setting by steering clear of shiny or glossy surfaces and, instead, privileged more natural materials and an overall monotonal, soft palette rendered in white oak paneling on the walls and floor. Again, we collaborated with a millworker to custom design and fabricate all the furniture for the store and engaged a glassblower to craft unique glass globes for the light fixtures we designed to be distributed throughout the space. Custom-designed lounge sofas wend their way through the store’s antechambers, providing more rounded, curvaceous moments to encourage relaxation and also to break up the narrow space’s right angles. The sales desks are embossed in parchment-white leather, which mirrors the white oak flooring and custom display cases visitors encounter on the way in. Two varieties of Vals Quartzite, each a dramatic hue of green-grey with unique striations, contrast slightly with the lighter palette to provide a sense of depth and perspective. They are specified in more heavily trafficked areas such as the flooring for the entryway and bathroom, while also comprising the trapezoidal volume of the welcome desk, which anchors the space and provides a strong brand statement.
AUDEMARS PIGUET MIAMI OFFICEMiami, Florida, USACompleted: January, 2019Square feet: 4,500Studio Galeon continues its ongoing relationship with Audemars Piguet with the design of their administrative office in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami. This office serves several functions simultaneously: It is a regional office for their Latin American operations; the headquarters for all North American retail, and it also serves as a place to welcome select clients. We partitioned the open space with a conference room to allow for a separation of the office’s distinct functions while also positioning the room as a natural gathering point for both formal and informal office discussions. This volume divides the space in half with glass walls forming two sides of its perimeter to allow natural light to flood the entirety of the space. One side of the office is dedicated to staff administration and office settings, and the other designed to accommodate a small kitchen and storage, wrapping around to a small lounge on the other side of the conference room. Upon entering the space, visitors encounter a white oak-paneled wall that forms the conference room’s south end. Its outward face is embellished with the Audemars Piguet logo and acts as a small reception and lobby area. Two smaller private offices sit in opposite corners of the office. Their glass walls are gently curved to encourage more fluid circulation in between their perimeter and the sharp corners of the conference room. The radius of the curved glass walls in each private office is replicated throughout the space – gentle little ripples that offer a quiet reminder of this unique detail. Visitors may notice the same curvature in the custom-designed lozenge-shaped coffee table made from travertine in the rear lounge. A similar rounded edge is seen in the travertine top crafted for the credenzas in the private offices, custom oak pieces we designed and had fabricated by our millwork partner in New York. With them, we also designed and crafted a low-slung leather sofa and lounge chairs in the the rear lounge. Travertine seemed like a natural choice to impart a more textural element that cohered with the handsome color of the white oak and also evoked the beach nearby, an analogy that is pushed a bit further in custom rug designs that feature striations recalling water gently rolling in over bands of white sand.
AUDEMARS PIGUET CLEARWATER OFFICEClearwater, Florida, USACompletion Date: December, 2019Square feet: 5,000The Audemars Piguet Clearwater office was originally designed and constructed by the company in 2014 to only house operational facilities and small offices. The project has since evolved, and Studio Galeon was brought in to transform a part of the building that was formerly dedicated to storage into a training center for North American staff, along with a hub for human resources operations. We conceived and designed the spaces within the building, which serve these myriad operational functions. The existing concrete structure dictated how the space will be programmed. We organized the space around a full-scale mock showroom, at the center of the building, complete with familiar Audemars Piguet touches like their trademark trapezoidal welcome bar and their video wall. Here, new salespeople are on-boarded and trained to serve future clients in Audemars Piguet retail locations across North America. Studio Galeon designed a U-shaped perimeter of offices surrounding the staged boutique to allow staff and visitors the opportunity to obtain a 360-degree view of the mock showroom. Because it is open on all sides, the training boutique feels open and less intimidating than if it were entirely closed off. Understanding that the building is constructed from raw concrete, we are working with an acoustical engineer to ensure that interior elements may help absorb and mediate sound. With this research in mind, we are collaborating with a designer in Europe to custom fabricate sleek acoustical partition systems to physically and acoustically divide the office and training spaces without having to drop the ceiling to compress the space. Audemars Piguet was not afraid of translating their brand to a more industrial feel to reflect the building’s function. Given our intimate knowledge of Audemars Piguet and our involvement in introducing the luxury timepiece maker to a North American customer, we took on the challenge to marry the luxury brand’s identity with a more raw palette. We incorporated their palette of natural materials, including white oak and plasters and added a fine steel mesh to the brand’s repertoire. The result is a family of textures that reflect the function of the space as well as the brand’s identity to both new hires as well as select clients. The tightly-gauged steel mesh wraps around steel scaffold archways that divide the training boutique from the remainder of the offices and meeting rooms downstairs. These three first-floor meeting rooms on the building’s south end are divided by accordian-fold glass partitions that may be opened and closed to allow for either more intimate meetings or larger gatherings. On the opposite end of the building, we designed a staircase with custom-milled white oak handrails and paneling. The wide staircase serves as a place of circulation, uniting the more functional offices downstairs with the more formal offices upstairs.
DATE & TIMEBoston, Massachusetts, USACompletion: Feb 2019Square feet: 5,000Eight bathrooms, seven bedrooms, four materials, and one unforgettable view. For this private Montauk beach house, we decided to make the most of many different rooms and environments with only a limited material palette. Everything here was designed to be soothing. The restraint imposed by the materials ensures both consistency and the ability to allow the visitor’s brain to relax and focus on what’s most important: the seafront view. We are designing the home’s interiors in collaboration with Berg Design Architecture, who are the architects of record. Our interior concept is conceived as an open canvas that stretches to the views of the ocean. The minimal palette includes white oak, bronze hardware, Calacatta Borghini marble and travertine, along with a hushed-white Moroccan plaster. The client was deeply involved in the process of designing the home. We worked with them to better understand how this residential space should operate both as a place for family gatherings as well as a place in which to eliminate distractions felt in their busy work lives. The client’s need to disconnect generated the idea of a muted material palette, which we developed together with them, and helped us conceive of the the interiors as spaces of forced meditation. In this way, we really wanted to respect and elevent the essence of the materials to allow them to radiate their natural properties and textures while also serving the functional purposes of the architectural program. Simple is not always easy – our blending of materials was a patient process that necessitated concentrated collaboration and decision-making between the architect and the client. The white oak is custom-milled for the home’s wide-plank floors, door surfaces, and select wall panels, including the bedrooms’ built-in closets. We designed the home’s central stairway with a hand-carved oak handrail inset in a hand-sculpted plaster recess, a hidden detail that keeps the wall surface flat and unbroken. We similarly designed recessed tracks in the ceiling for hanging curtains that both divide rooms and also provide a diaphanous texture replicated in the luminescence of Moroccan plaster walls, which radiate a soft glow when light bounces off them. The living room’s centerpiece is a fireplace made entirely from Calacatta Borghini marble, which serves as a gathering point for both family and guests. Its broad and dramatic striations complement the untamed forms of the flames housed within.