Having previously worked with the brand to develop its concept and implement an expansion plan that could be fuelled by its existing success, rpa:group was engaged to bring the new concept to life for this store and to evolve it to captivate the local market.
Drawing from traditional Italian and art deco themes, that are a genteel nod to the origin of the product, yet infused with contemporary influences, the new store focuses heavily on creating a sumptuous and evocative experience for its customers. Every fixture and fitting has been carefully considered to reflect the quality of the brand offering.
To access the store, customers pass beneath an impressive series of pink pergolas, framed with blossom, and through a large seating area, surrounded by a pink picket fence. At the entrance, customers are greeted with the ‘WOW wall’ with bright neon signage and a quintessentially British telephone box, rebranded in ‘Snowflake’ pink, and a nod to the brand’s birthplace in London. This area allows customers to take their photos in the telephone booth with their sweet treat and upload them to their social media platforms, tagging the brand, which, in turn, optimises Snowflake’s presence online.
Within the store, the wide and welcoming counter is divided into hot and cold areas by the till point and order station. In the cold area, the splendidly colourful gelato draws the eye from a colourful and abundant display case, while from the hot area, customers can watch the theatre of the waffle and crepe making. The feeling of being participatory to the entire process is further enhanced by a “Snow wall” along one side of the store, with vision through to the Gelato Lab, where customers get a peek behind the scenes of ‘Snowflake Luxury Gelato’. Behind the counter, an aperture featuring ‘Mondrian’ style brass pigeonhole shelving for merchandising and planters also allows visibility to the Gelato Lab. Having such integrated access to the product creation process not only provides entertainment, but serves to enhance brand engagement and credibility.
The overall palette is a combination of dusky pinks and warm greys, used throughout and in the wall finishes and geometrically pattered tiles. Marble effect counter tops reflect Italian luxury and cleanliness, while softening effects come from wooden elements with the use of linear slats and the oak chevron flooring. Antique brushed brass adds reflective texture for skirtings and detailing, as well as framing for protective screens. A vast array of pendant lighting above the counter illuminates the product.
The all important ‘Insta Moment ’ comes from a customer perch bar, which is set beneath a beautiful pink blossom tree entwined with cascading pendant lights. This forms an eye – catching feature and a great focal point of the store.