The visual language of scientific laboratories inspired the look of this blue-lit concept store in Monaco, which London firm Universal Design Studio imagined for skincare brand Biotherm.
Although the 30 square meter concept store presents a selection of the brand’s products, none of them are for sale. Instead, visitors can fully immerse themselves in the experience of being in the “laboratory”.
“Brands are increasingly turning to physical presence for means beyond selling products,” explained Satoshi Isono, creative director at Universal Design Studio.
“They’re leveraging spaces to tell their core brand messages in unique ways and ultimately connect with customers in more impactful ways.”
As the exterior walls of the Blue Beauty Lab back to water tanks housing various aquatic creatures, Universal Design Studio had to keep architectural interventions to a minimum. Accordingly, the floor plan of the store is quite simple.
To enter, visitors pass through a circular door and a short mirrored tunnel. The interior is bathed in navy blue light and divided into two parts.
The first is an area reminiscent of a research lab that provides insight into the production process of Life Plankton – an extract containing 35 different nutrients that Biotherm incorporates into some of its moisturizers, serums and peels.
Stainless steel counters and glass shelves run around the sides of the space, dotted with science paraphernalia like microscopes, Petri dishes, test tubes, and graduated flasks.
A small workshop forms the second part of the store, centered by a round table. Directly above is a large ring light emitting a bright white glow that enhances the laboratory vibe of the space.
The clinical aesthetic of the Laboratories has also inspired a number of other interiors.
Among them are a bicycle shop in Copenhagen by local designer Johannes Torpe and a cafe in Tokyo with a white lacquered steel ceiling grid.