The iconic turquoise and gold Eastern Columbia Building in downtown LA proved too much to resist for Acne Studios chairman Mikael Schiller when it came to real estate shopping for the Swedish brand’s California flagship. ‘It wasn’t our original intention to open in this part of Los Angeles, but we fell in love with the building as well as the opportunity to do something beyond a flagship store,’ Schiller says of the 1930 Art Deco property, originally designed by Claud Beelman in the city’s old theatre district. ‘We feel there is something vibrant and interesting going on in downtown LA, and we are excited to become a part of this transformation.’
Covering more than 500 sq m on the building’s ground floor, the shop houses men’s and women’s ready-to-wear, accessories and denim collections, along with a VIP shopping suite and ilcaffè, a branch of creative director Jonny Johansson’s favourite Stockholm coffee shop. Fitted with Acne Studios’ soft furnishings, the brand’s largest boutique is crowned by a ‘Giant Triple Mushroom’ installation by Belgian artist Carsten Höller (who in 2010, created a similarly funghi-inspired trophy for our Design Awards). The pink terrazzo flooring and plush carpeting in electric purple and blood red then nicely juxtaposes the industrial feel of the space's perforated-aluminium display cabinets.