Sybarite has designed an entirely new store concept for Ferrari's flagship store at its HQ in Maranello, Italy. The project reflects the new direction that the brand is taking, with a visually impactful store concept that focuses on the experience and essential connection between the man and the machine, the sophisticated balance between artisanship and innovation, whilst also looking to the future.
The store's design concept is entirely new, conceived and designed by Sybarite together with the iconic carmaker, as part of a larger brand diversification project to realize its vision of heritage, craftsmanship and design, as well as evoking the passion, sense of place and nostalgia around the brand - but in a highly contemporary way. The work began nearly 2 years ago, when Sybarite was invited to create a concept for the new retail stores that would showcase the new direction for fashion under the supervision of Creative Director Rocco Iannone as well as housing their other retail products and collaborations. Faced with a 190-page brief that focused primarily on creating a new retail environment, Sybarite's approach was bold, inviting Ferrari into an expansive viewpoint that proposed an experiential journey into the heart and history of the Prancing Horse.
The new retail store presents a colonnaded terracotta façade that evokes Italy's classical heritage, through which tantalizing tableaux of the interior can be glimpsed. Offering a more contemporary note to counterpoint the exterior, the team opted to use glass, a material that can be colorful, can curve and ripple in a sinuous movement. Through the store's interior sweeps a red ribbon of glass, the fluent lines running like a wave in the traditional red of Ferrari and replicating the curves of the Fiorano Circuit track. Behind the glass is a wall of white bricks that serves as a backdrop for the products; the clay bricks represent the initial clay modeling process for Ferrari prototypes before the cars are turned to metal forms. Sybarite has also designed a curving continuous shelving system of brushed metal which emerges out of the wall of clay bricks and expands to become a full depth shelf, running the whole expanse of the store and creating a dynamic retail display with shelves and rails.
Once in the store, visitors can move between distinct zones that add to the experience of discovery and theatre, distinguished by materials, colors and even carpets. All the bespoke central fixtures reference the Lucite furniture made famous in the 50s and 60s by iconic Italian designers such as Gio Ponti and Giancarlo Piretti amongst others.
As well as the classic red, Sybarite also wanted to incorporate the famous Ferrari yellow, the traditional color of Modena and the secondary color that is part of Ferrari's DNA. Behind Enzo Ferrari's desk in his office is a wall of handmade yellow tiles, each one featuring the prancing horse, so a witty touch was to use these in the areas where financial transactions will occur.
Naturally, the fitting rooms are a highly important part of the design. Condina wanted to reference the materiality and texture of the cars themselves within these spaces. His team decided to line the walls of the lounge area with the luxury suede material Alcantara, used inside Ferrari cars, in a customized yellow. Another nod in this area to the cars are the brushed aluminum doors and the Poltrona Frau ribbed and stitched leather as specified by Ferrari for its cars.
Within the store, there is an adaptable sales area that can be used for several purposes as well as for retail displays. Sybarite wanted to pay tribute to another icon of motor racing, Enrico Nardi, who designed the famous aluminum and mahogany Nardi steering wheel that would feature in so many Ferrari cars. An ingenious system of flexible wooden fins can be used as a structure to hold shelves and rails or they can be moved to allow a backdrop for a screen showing important races. Sybarite has connected at every point with iconic Italian brands such as Flos lighting and Cassina while the clay and terracotta have been made by local artisan Matteo Brioni, a fourth-generation craftsman.
A special area has been created to display official collaborations - here the visitor can see an interpretation of Rocco's mood boards linked to Enzo Ferrari by a red line that replicates the map of the Fiorano circuit, with all the modern interventions in brushed aluminum and acrylic boxes.
Photography: Paola Pansini