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XTRA Marks a New Beginning

The new XTRA retail showroom at Marina Square delivers immersive and integrative shop-in-shop multi-brand experiences in a single, prime city location.

  • Lim Choon Hong, Managing Director, XTRA

BY Janice Seow

5 January, 2017

Given the competitive world of furniture retail, XTRA’s almost 30 years of established presence in the sector is more than a little impressive. The luxury furniture retailer exclusively carries international premium brands like Herman Miller, Dedon, Magis, Tom Dixon and Moroso, and has long been recognised as a main go-to destination for design products in Singapore.

XTRA’s recent relocation from Park Mall where it has resided for close to two decades, to a new space at Marina Square marks a significant new beginning for the company. The new 13,000-square-foot showroom houses multiple shop-in-shop experiences and dedicated living spaces. Kith café, formerly a separate entity from XTRA at the old location, is now also integrated into the showroom space.

“With the new store’s design, we wanted to display the familiar brands for which we are known for, but with more clarity and care, displaying them as specific brands carefully curated in a multi-brand environment,” says Lim Choon Hong, Managing Director of XTRA.

Singapore-based design studio Produce was tasked to create a multifaceted spatial layout and design. Led by Chief Creative Director Pan Yi Cheng, the Produce team envisioned a malleable design approach to allow for a clear and all-encompassing retail setting, where brands could convey their unique identity while sitting in close proximity with one another.

The designers have carved the showroom into cellular parcels of different sizes to serve as ‘mini stores’ for the various brands that XTRA carries. Subtle provisions for each brand to set up their mini stores have been provided within each parcel: flooring can be carpeted while the mesh panels on the ceiling can be used for hanging lights and decoration.

Adding further dimension to the retail experience are flexible shop front windows, set up as ‘pop-up stores’ that serve as extensions of the mini-stores within the showroom. The “Apartment” section also gathers signature brands together within a curated space to present a cohesive materialisation of ever-changing living concepts.

The showroom’s pièce de résistance comes in the form of an organic envelope located within the double-volume section of the showroom, where Herman Miller’s shop-in-shop resides. A nod to the previous set-up at the Park Mall location, the new installation is an improved iteration on the earlier assembly; using a tailoring technique called darting, the thin sheets of plywood can be bent and curved to the desired shape. The resulting structure encapsulates the Herman Miller design ethos, recalling the brand’s classic range embodied by the Eames moulded plywood furniture, as well as the innovative spirit of the brand’s ergonomic work chair range. What’s more, it serves as an iconic entry point into XTRA’s brand new space.

Read more about the new XTRA showroom in the upcoming Feb/Mar issue of Cubes Indesign.

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