Situated across the firm’s celebrated Prada Tokyo Epicenter, a new steel-canopied Miu Miu boutique offers a more intimate, “understated” experience.
Paris-based Miu Miu was established in 1993 by Miuccia Prada as a platform for exploring creative design concepts beyond her signature Prada line. Tomorrow, the iconic Herzog & de Meuron-designed Prada Tokyo Epicenter will welcome a sister Miu Miu store, also by Herzog & de Meuron, to the Aoyama district of Tokyo.
The 720-square-meter (7750-square-foot) building, sited diagonally across from the Prada Tokyo Epicenter on Miyuki street, features a canopied, metallic awning that lends the boutique a more intimate quality, in contrast to the transparency of Prada’s glass-and-steel façade.
Herzog & de Meuron’s slightly-covered, box-shaped model for Miu Miu allows pedestrians to peer in at the two-story shop that, inside, is meant to resemble a spacious, comfortable home.
The inside-facing surface of the exterior’s sharp-angled, steel awning meets a softened layer of textured copper that curves in at its corners. A wall and display shelves inside the boutique are paneled in a complementary copper material.
According to the architects:
“Since zoning regulations called for less height, we explored the potential of a smaller, more intimate building. We used the following thoughts to channel our ideas: More like a home than a department store, more hidden than open, more understated than extravagant, more opaque than transparent.”
Aoyama—although not “particularly beautiful or elegant,” as the architects say— has remained a showplace for architectural innovation over the past two decades. The pair of Herzog & de Meuron projects are neighbored by the work of many esteemed architects including Toyo Ito & Associates’s Tod’s building, and Kengo Kuma’s Starbucks Coffee on Omotesando street.
Photographs: Miu Miu, Instagram