harmay xidan

harmay xidan

Beijing, China, 2021

‘People had warned us for this world. A world that has run out of time… Imagine it, this future.  Society as we know it, a thing of the past. Only darkness, relics, and memories remain. And of course, chaos – Lots of it.
To survive in this unknown world, life adapts, reinvents itself. Working within the chaos, side by side, only then a new world can be born.
Bringing new life, a new way of living.’

You know the feeling. To question your place, the order of things. The end of the world is always just around the corner, and you wonder about a different way, a different world.

With Harmay’s newest Beijing store, the end of the world is here.

Beijing is a city with a strong personality, a city that speaks for itself. The building site reflects this internal fortitude: located in downtown Beijing, this mall does not rise but roots into the ground, leaving a park to the city.

Designed to feel like an apocalyptic spaceship just dug out from the bowels of Beijing, this store breaks tradition with the previous five Harmay stores. No glamour here, no green.

The customer base is bold and forward-thinking and when given a choice, choose the new. To move forward, you must break with the past. The store offers a look just beyond the end, a glimpse of what might be. It is designed to put you on the edge of what you know. Transportive, unique spatial solutions meet the modern consumer experience.

The old world is dark, chaotic, complicated. This distinctly dystopian mood contrasts with the futuristic brightness of the smaller inserted spatial elements. 

Chaos is only chaos in a world where order exists. There are recognizable features you might find in any store. However, in this new world, there is new life, a sense of spatial play with room to breathe. It is a play of contrasts – chaos and order on stage together.

With all the subtle and unresolved conflict, you are in the driver’s seat, a Choose Your Own Adventure tale for the brave new world you’ve always wondered about.
In between, a liminal space where time and place no longer matter. A transitional tunnel functions to shuttle guests between the new world and the old.

In this bold store, you are pushed to the edges of your imagination and invited to explore a new world.
And only time can tell what this new world will bring.

Client: HARMAY
Location: Beijing, China
GFA: 880 sqm
Completion: 2021
Design Scope: Interior design
Design Principals: Wendy Saunders, Vincent de Graaf
Project Architect:Leslie Chen
Interior Team: Baoer Wang, Dongkai Hu, Jo Jiao, Leslie Chen, Shawn Zhang, Simon Huang, Siyun Shen
FFE Team: Baoer Wang
Photography: Wen Studio
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