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« A Look Inside the New Primark King of Prussia Megastore, From The Perspective of a 16-year Old | Main | Talking Mixed-Use with J.F. Finn, III »

Hey U.S., Are You Ready For #PRIMANIA?

The fast fashion retailer, Primark, enters the U.S. market with King of Prussia Flagship. Photo via Instagram (@primark)

Today, Primark opens its Flagship location in Pennsylvania’s King of Prussia Mall, one of the largest retail malls in the United States. The opening marks the second store of the planned rollout of the Dublin-based retailer’s entrance into the U.S. market. It’s also the first of the new U.S. prototype, designed by Gensler. There are six additional locations planned for 2016, each of which will be variations of the King of Prussia Flagship design. Here’s a rundown of what to expect during your trip to the Flagship, as well as descriptions of some of the design elements that we are most excited about.

Photo © Gensler

The digital design is like, whoa.

Our digital designers had a big task ahead of them: the Flagship needed to entice the demographic that’s near and dear to Primark’s heart, the digital natives/millennials. To do this, a collage of four digital LED windows shine brightly through the exterior glazing. This collage has the ability to support interactive as well as static imagery, and the framed digital screens integrate seamlessly with the architecture.

Photo © Gensler

At the upper level entranceway, an entry billboard that’s 40 feet long and 18 feet tall greets shoppers and draws them into the vast expanse of the lower level shopping area. At the heart of this main retail level, the Digital Roundabout (featured above) functions as “the pulse of Primark.” The 32 LCD screens suspended from the ceiling in a fast-fashion-meets-digital tornado-formation feature fashion trends from around the world via Primark’s #PRIMANIA online feed. You’ll find everything from street wear in Madrid to Instagram stylists showing off their “haul” (#thehaul) recent outfits in Boston.

Strut down the runway.

When you walk into the Flagship from the interior mall entry, you immediately come upon “the runway,” a multi-segment platform centered on the aisle. It features a parade of mannequins styled in the latest fashion arrivals. A grid of diffused color changing LED lights invigorates your experience each time you enter. As an added bonus, the lights have a “party mode” setting for in-store special events.

Photo © Gensler

Neon hanger chandeliers. Need I say more?

With more than 50 points of sale in the store, it was important that the checkout process never feel dull or down-market. Designed as a space within a space, the freestanding metal framed fixtures are clad in plywood, creating semi-enclosed spaces that form an instant destination of interest for shoppers. Custom neon chandeliers have become the trademark of the U.S. prototype design. Each chandelier is a tangle of 32 custom neon hangers that function as a charming yet quirky commentary on the brand.

Photo © Gensler

Selfie-ready fitting rooms

The fitting rooms take on a different feel than the rest of the store and are designed to feel like quiet sanctuaries removed from the bustle and activity of the sales floor. The reward for entrance? #instantselfiehub

Aesthetic: Mindful the brand heritage with an eye toward the future

The overall design takes cues from the brand’s Irish roots with the use of brick, exposed concrete and the essential use of the brand color, aqua, as well as a liberal dose of neon. Adding to the core material palette are unfinished materials such as corrugated metal cladding, pine plywood, and an unprecedented level of integration of interactive digital applications. The design team played with different applications of familiar brand materials. This allows the new prototype to feel fresh and familiar at once, and it relates the Flagship back to its sister stores in Europe, while also establishing a unique personality in the U.S. market.

We are wishing our client all the best during the grand reveal! Watch the opening unfold by following #PRIMANIA.

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