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Shelving systems in Garde Hvalsøe showroom in Aarhus by Bunn Studio

Bunn Studio designs Garde Hvalsøe showroom to resemble grand apartment

New York practice Bunn Studio has revamped a furniture showroom set in a Renaissance building in Aarhus, Denmark, to look more like an apartment than a store.

Designed for Danish cabinet maker Garde Hvalsøe, the showroom houses the brand's signature handcrafted kitchens and walk-in wardrobes alongside a selection of furnishings.

Kitchen and dining table set up in Garde Hvalsøe showroom
Garde Hvalsøe's Aarhus showroom is set in a Renaissance building

The 600-square-metre space is split over two levels and six different rooms, including a bathroom and a kitchen set-up much like a real residence.

Although not typically included in a cabinet maker's showroom, these spaces are designed to help customers visualise the furniture in their own homes.

Kitchen island in Aarhus furniture shop by Bunn Studio
The store is split across six rooms including a kitchen

"The layout is built with elements from a classic American high-end apartment including an entrance slash kitchen, lounge area, and a bedroom slash self-care area," Bunn Studio explained.

The Renaissance building dates back to 1898 and features high ceilings, slender proportions and large windows that admit a warm ambient light.

Wooden bed and clothing storage in Garde Hvalsøe showroom
Modern furnishings are contrasted against hand-painted glass ceilings

Bunn Studio, led by Louise Sigvardt and Marcus Hannibal, wanted to create a mellow and laid-back atmosphere in the space using this natural light as the starting point.

"The aim of the design was to create a place where visitors can spend their entire day comfortably and that invites guests to slow down and become aware of the details that characterise Garde Hvalsøe furniture," the practice said.

Vanity and chair in Aarhus furniture shop by Bunn Studio
A large vanity mirror sits at the end of the first floor

No doors separate the different rooms, enabling visitors to see straight from the first-floor entrance to the mirror at the opposite end of the showroom in one long, unbroken line.

Garde Hvalsøe's minimalist and contemporary designs, including beds and bathtubs, sit in contrast with the building's original features such as ornamented columns, mouldings and hand-painted glass ceilings.

Bunn Studio selected a colour scheme to honour the existing features of the space, with the top of the walls painted in a dark chocolate brown.

This makes the ceilings seem lower and creates a more intimate, cosy and domestic atmosphere, according to the practice.

Living room set-up with couch and coffee table in Garde Hvalsøe showroom
The top of the walls is painted in a dark chocolate brown

The earthy, natural colours of the columns and the walls are contrasted with lighter hues such as the shirting blue pinstripe of the bedding, the red Verona Rossa stone on the vanity table and the bright yellow lampshade that tops the floor lamp in the lounge.

"We launched our first flagship showroom in Copenhagen in 2019 and opening our redesigned secondary space in Aarhus is an exciting progression for us," commented Garde Hvalsøe founder Søren Hvalsøe Garde.

"Bunn Studio has designed a bright and beautiful space where we can truly showcase our craftsmanship, our holistic approach to design and our quest for exquisite quality."

Freestanding bathtub in Aarhus furniture showroom by Bunn Studio
The showroom also features a bathroom set-up

Bunn Studio was also responsible for the design of the first standalone Copenhagen showroom from Danish furniture brand Brdr Krüger, which references the history of both the company and the location.

The photography is by Michael Rygaard.

More images

Garde Hvalsøe showroom in Aarhus by Bunn Studio
Garde Hvalsøe showroom in Aarhus by Bunn Studio
Garde Hvalsøe showroom in Aarhus by Bunn Studio
Garde Hvalsøe showroom in Aarhus by Bunn Studio