Brazilian architect Isay Weinfeld won the Shopping category at the World Architecture Festival in Barcelona last week for this store for flip flop brand Havaianas in São Paulo. Update: this project is included in Dezeen Book of Ideas, which is on sale now for £12.
Shoppers enter the building to stand on a platform at street level, overlooking the main part of the store where sandals are displayed in a sunken double-height space.
Export models are displayed inside a shipping container while a market stall recalls the origins of the brand.
A grid of wooden and glazed panels forms the roof, admitting lots of natural light to the plant-filled interior.
See all the category winners in our previous story.
Here's some more information from Isay Weinfeld Arquiteto:
Havaianas Sandals, created in 1962, drew their inspiration from the “zori”, traditional Japanese slippers made of rice straw. A product of extremely low cost, for many years they were just rubber flip-flops, a long way from the fashion icon they are today.
To design a store at one of the world's most expensive addresses (Rua Oscar Freire, in São Paulo) to sell products that cost from € 2.30 to € 10.00 – and not more than that - was, at one time, the excitement and the joy of the work.
This is Havaianas' first store in Brazil. Our greatest challenge was to cast onto the architecture the climate the brand inspires: freshness, casualness, comfort, ease, well-being, Brazilianness.
The shop has a very informal atmosphere and the outcome is nearly a square - a space fully opened onto the street, practically an extension of the sidewalk, without doors or window displays, with lush greenery and intense natural lighting, only covered by a metal grid alternating glass/wooden closures and openings for ventilation and irrigation.
The building develops in descending levels. At street level, just a small lounge area, a mezzanine overlooking the whole store; the store per se, one level below, occupies an ample clear span featuring double-height ceilings, marked by independent elements: a street market stand reminds of the origin of the sandals, initially sold at the city's free markets; a container displays the " export" models, so far unseen in Brazil; a transparent cylinder features the so-called "new products" (bags, socks, towels, etc.); and a high-tech cube tells the story of Havaianas.
Amidst all that, a lowered area for customization services and featuring displays for the children's product line. At the back of the store, on a half-raised level, there is a small garden for exclusive use by staff; the underground houses offices and storage areas.
AUTHOR: ISAY WEINFELD
COLLABORATOR: DOMINGOS PASCALI
PROJECT MANAGER: ELENA SCARABOTOLO
TEAM: MARCELO ALVARENGA / LUCIANA SIQUEIRA
COMMISSION OF PROJECT: JUNE 2008
PROJECT CONCLUSION: NOVEMBER 2008
BUILDING: AUGUST 2008
BUILDING COMPLETION: JANUARY 2009
BUILT AREA: 300,00 m²