Spring 2015
18th Annual Visual Victories Awards

Best Store Design

Winner – Rialto Jean Project

Retailer: Rialto Jean Project
Location: South Street Seaport, New York, NY
Center/Owner: The Howard Hughes Corporation
Entry submitted by: Corey Lober
Visual Merchandiser: Erin Feniger, Rialto Jean Project

Rialto Jean Project uses the charm of exposed brick walls and combines it with the minimalist design of an uptown loft. The interior layout invites passersby to stop by for a casual day of shopping and conversation. The neutral-color walls allow for the product to be showcased to its best effect. Judge Baker comments, “Love the use of textures and colors: brick walls, wooden floors, creative fixturing, a comfy seating area and a fuzzy rug. Very inviting. I imagine a shopper could spend several relaxing hours in here with her girlfriends trying on clothes.”

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First Runner-Up – Christian Benner Custom

Retailer: Christian Benner Custom
Location: South Street Seaport, New York, NY
Center/Owner: The Howard Hughes Corporation
Entry submitted by: Corey Lober
Visual Merchandiser: Christian Benner

Christian Benner Custom is all about individuality. Each of its custom-made jackets are one of a kind so it makes sense that the company’s retail space would be equally unique. The concept here is the blending of apparel, eclectic music and works from local artists with the grittiness of New York City’s East Village music scene circa-1970. Judge Ritter says that this retail design is, “Very cool and edgy.” Note the cavernous space, textured walls, industrial ceiling and exposed columns that are the backdrop for a living room-like setting from which to browse a variety of racks of jackets. The vintage furniture is by Rent Patina and the artwork is by Michael H. Celebrity fashion designer and company principal, Christian Benner, explains what’s behind the store design, “My main vision was to create something that was very similar and pays tribute to Andy Warhol’s factory where there is art, music and community all in one room.” It’s interesting to note that Benner started his career as a visual merchandiser at Victoria’s Secret.

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Second Runner-Up – Muse by Lucca

Retailer: Lucca Fashion Boutiques, Inc.
Location: Penn Square Mall, Oklahoma City, OK
Center/Owner: Simon Property Group
Entry submitted by: Anny Christensen
Visual Merchandiser: Emily Smith and Yaniv Segal, Lucca Fashion Boutiques, Inc.

Muse by Lucca, a shop selling both women’s fashions and home goods, combines classy chic with fun frivolity. The combination creates an energized atmosphere where the shopper can discover hidden treasures at every turn. The fixture plan goes along with prop selection and are in perfect harmony; and the store is lit with a mix of diffuse pendant and pinpoint lights, which help set the stage for customer satisfaction. Judge Baker comments that this design is, “Exquisite, inviting and beautiful.” The dark green signage and tall potted plants at either side of the entrance are a nice contrast against the Tuscan cream and peach tones of the floor and walls as well as blond wood fixtures throughout the store.

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Brett Beaudette

Brett Beaudette serves as Lead Retail Designer and Design Manager for Mall of America, in addition to owning his own design consulting business, Ideal Productions & Design. Beaudette specializes in creating unique and successful inline, kiosk and RMU designs and merchandising strategies. He has been featured on HGTV and Travel Channel specials for his mall holiday décor and store design sets, and can be reached at brett@idealpd.net.
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