Design showcase: Discreet luxury drinks store at Peninsula in Abu Dhabi

10th November 2017

Boutique drinks store Peninsula in Abu Dhabi sought to gain as much recognition for its interiors as for its product selection, and briefed South African agency ARRCC, based in Cape Town to help it meet than ambition.

The brief called for an experience that would encourage customers to dwell, which has resulted in a modern, warm and welcoming interior with ample space for entertaining and events.

Because of various local restrictions on alcohol sales, the design is inwardly-focused. A fumed oak wall feature at the entrance serves as a screen, while also setting a tone of luxury and sophistication.

No external visual communication is allowed, meaning no windows could be used. This made interior lighting a key concern, for both display and ambience. Custom in-shelf lighting ensures visibility of products, while strategic spotlights provide mood and warmth.

A feature cluster of cylindrical copper tube lights is placed in the wine cellar area, adding a focal point.

Existing columns were incorporated into the design of the 320 sq m (3,444 sq ft) unit, maximising the use of space and emphasising the 6m ceiling height.

A linear layout sees customers enter the spirits area from the entrance, followed by a central wine cellar, before encountering beers and ciders. The most popular items are located at the rear of the store to encourage shoppers to circulate and enjoy the retail experience.

Apart from freestandng displays, stock is displayed only around the perimeter of the store, to allow space for large tasting events and other activities.

Timber cladding panels add warmth, and create storage spaces as well as allowing product display. Bespoke joinery adds to the impression of quality, along with a range of patterns and textures in the walls.

Concrete floors fit with the ‘industrial chic’ feel of the store, which leaves pipes and ducts on show.

Timber and marble are featured extensively throughout the store, with colour-coded shelving for different categories: white for spirits, French oak for wine and black for beers and ciders.