The materials for the project were chosen by lead Céline designer, Phoebe Philo. Samples were reviewed prior to selection by the design team in France. “The stone plays a huge role in the space,” said Tiffany Aryeh, President of Amalfi Stone, who fabricated the materials. “It’s an integral part of the aesthetic of the store. The eye sees beautiful designer clothes and really well-crafted stone work.”
Blue quartzite was chosen for the store’s exterior cladding, jade onyx for an interior feature wall, Roman travertine for the walls and display shelves, Fire Red onyx for additional shelving, Amber onyx as honeycomb door panels and green serpentine for floor accent strips. “The storefront exterior cladding boasts mechanically attached turquoise blue quartzite in 5 - x 6-foot panels, which wraps into the interior entry way,” said Aryeh. “The store interior showcases 3-inch-thick cross-cut Roman travertine walls and matching display shelves.”
Fire Red onyx is used as an accent material for the shelves, while Brown Wood onyx is used for the honeycomb door panels. The store feature wall showcases book-matched jade onyx, which continues around to clad the changing room door panels in a honeycombed system. Amalfi Stone fabricated all owner-supplied material locally in Sun Valley, CA, and completed the installation onsite, as well as installing the concrete floor paving. In total, 4,000 square feet of stone was used, with a polished finish for all material, except the travertine and jade onyx which were honed.
“Like most brands, Céline alike, the focus is the clothing and accessories in the collection, but with the intention of creating a store experience,” said Aryeh. “There is a balance between representing the clothing line and creating a beautiful space for the customer, this store archived both elements seamlessly. The clothing is crafted with such care and precision, and our stonework had to match that quality. The first element the customer sees is the stonework, and our work has to be perfect to draw them in and keep them engaged. Amalfi’s goal is to create a positive experience that keeps the customer in the store.”
Throughout the process, the team from Amalfi Stone faced and conquered several challenges. One obstacle was the large-sized pieces of blue quartzite employed for the exterior facade. In addition to the size, the exterior wall installation was also an issue because of the limited sidewalk space needed to mobilize and lift the stone to the height of the storefront.
Installing the jade onyx panels for the interior feature wall was also challenging. The wall was 14 feet tall, with piece sizes measuring 4 feet, 2 inches x 6 feet. Aryeh explained that installing these large pieces with the required bookmatching pattern called for careful attention to detail.
In the end, the design was a success due to the dedication of all involved. “The opening of the store received great reviews and was a hit not only because of the brand but the design,” said Aryeh. “It’s a well-designed space and has a flow for store traffic. Each stone element is highlighted independently, allowing shoppers to admire the boutiques garments and design. It’s a stone museum within a retail space.”