Architect Nick Leith-Smith is working with Manolo Blahnik on the design for his latest store opening, the first boutique in Malaysia. The store will occupy an exclusive 100 square metre space located on level 2 of the Pavilion Mall, situated in the vibrant Bukit Bintang district. Transforming a traditional material used in furniture making and artisan scaffolding, Leith-Smith uses a forest of bamboo as the central motif for the space. Elegantly positioned in parallel, conforming to the plant’s natural growing pattern, the shoes are arranged in flowing lines, almost floating, picked out on individual brass shelves which follow the dark stained bamboo structure snaking around the space in graceful curves. Brass pendant feature lights are suspended from the high ceilings. The herringbone pattern marble floor is in-laid with brass detailing, drawing inspiration from palm leaves, and is mirrored in the brass canopy-like lighting above. Natural woven fabric in muted tropical colours is used for round ottomans and stools and accentuates contrasting metallic and stone finishes.
The shoe collections are also displayed on circular stone topped brass tables. The architect has provided two private spaces for discreet selection featuring beautiful fabric lined walls. Elevating the ubiquitous bamboo, with artful and imaginative design, the clever use of natural geometry all add to the allure of Blahnik’s creations. As always, Blahnik’s style, humour and playfulness resonate to create a space, which reflects the artistry of his shoes.