Once an experience only available to residents and visitors to London, Dover Street Market has managed to recreate its retail magic in Tokyo, New York, Beijing and, as of this week, Singapore too. Located within an ex-army barracks on Dempsey Hill, the brand’s inaugural southeast Asian presence is also its first single-floor undertaking, bringing a renewed elan to its iconic market concept.
From the outside, Dover Street Market Singapore’s white colonial building cuts an austere figure. A triple tiered roof tops the sprawling 12,325 sq ft space, culminating a ceiling that goes well over 10m at its highest point. Once inside, the Singapore outpost provides visitors with a similar sense of discovery that underscores each of its counterparts.
Dover Street Market Singapore is housed in a single-storey colonial building
Comprising a cacophony of textures, materials and installations, the Singapore boutique has been carved into a series of individualised spaces that denote each brand. At its core stands the DSM hut, a giant structure made up of a pastiche of painted plywood and corrugated zinc, that’s flanked by jewellery on one side, and The Row’s space, which features a Jacques-Henri Lartigue table and Andrée Putman shelving, on the other. Behind this, colourful arches appear to pierce through the white ceiling, while existing rows of black beams have been added to, giving the space a graphic, avant-garde feel.
The boutique’s daring energy continues with a pair of glass and steel structures, housing all of Comme des Garçons collections, a polka-dotted space filled with its Pocket range and a wire fence labyrinth filled with exuberant womenswear offerings from designers such as Jacquemus, JW Anderson, Simone Rocha and Molly Goddard. Menswear, including pieces from Raf Simons, Vetements and Gosha Rubchinskiy, are housed in eight freestanding metal towers, that lure visitors to weave in and around in order to savour the products.
As with all its other outposts, Rei Kawakubo has designed all of the general Dover Street Market and Comme des Garçons areas. The design of the other spaces dedicated to brands like Gucci, Céline, The Row, Thom Browne, Undercover, Sacai, Balenciaga and NikeLabDSM SGP have been left up to themselves. Topped off with a lighting installation designed by Thierry Dreyfus and an original soundscape by Calx Vive, the Singapore boutique’s artistically charged mix is as true to Kawakubo’s original vision as it could be.