The fashionably fabulous Parisian footwear brand Christian Louboutin (the red soles) landed in Mumbai, opened its first flagship store in the historic area of Horniman Circle, in a well preserved heritage building. Christian has a long admiration for India and has often looked here for inspiration, thus the flagship store had to be located in a heritage area amongst the rich history.
The store was designed by NewYork based architects 212 Box in collaboration with Rooshad Shroff as the local architect. There was an intentional decision to retain the heritage nature of the facade as well as certain parts of the interiors of the store. Demolition revealed certain happy surprises such as the arched windows of the heritage structure and metal jacket collars, which were retained and blended with the feel of the store.
The store is spread over two floors, women’s section on the ground floor and men’s on the first. Floors are covered with its signature Red Carpet with shoes displayed in its signature white niche walls. Beyond the execution of design, Rooshad Shroff also designed a number of elements for the store. Tiles being a signature material for International Louboutin stores, Shroff using the wall tiling system created the highlight wall of the store, incorporating the technique of Embroidery on Wood, a technique patented by Shroff. Meticulously designed, the wall uses 2000 Burma teak wood tiles, each carefully handcrafted, drilled, and hand embroidered, with Christian’s signature French knots in bright red, resulting in the feature wall becoming the highlight of the store.
Each wall covered with a different material tells its own story, and has a new feel. It is a sea of materials such as, Travertine stone, Burma teak wood, laser cut brass tiles, beaten tin tiles, yet balances itself perfectly.