NEW YORK – Duane Reade’s flagship store at 40 Wall Street in Manhattan took first place in the convenience store/pharmacy category at the Retail Design Institute’s 41st annual international awards program.
Branding and retail design consultancy CBX said Tuesday that award was presented in New York City at a ceremony coinciding with the National Retail Federation’s annual conference.
Occupying the ground floor and mezzanine of a 1930s-era tower at the historic building, the 22,000-square-foot Duane Reade store, which opened in July, was a collaborative effort between the chain, a unit of Walgreen Co. and New York-based CBX and Toronto-based consultants Joe Jackman Brand Inc.
CBX noted that dozens of new stores opened during 2011 competed for honors in categories ranging from full-line department stores and specialty stores to supermarkets. All submitted projects were judged by a panel of retail design practitioners on circulation, lighting, finishes, visual merchandising, graphics and way-finding, branding and fixturing.
According to CBX, the goal of the 40 Wall Street project was to build a state-of-the-art pharmacy/convenience store yet remain sensitive to the architecture in the space, where the Rockefeller family once operated its bank. Vintage architectural elements include dramatic stone arch bays, marble columns, 28-foot-high ceilings and gold-gilded accents. On the high-tech side is a virtual greeter using holography and audiovisual technology that directs customers.
Reflecting Duane Reade’s mantra of “New York Living Made Easy,” store features include an in-store Starbucks, a sushi bar, a juice bar, prepared foods to goand new departments such as a nail bar and a hair salon. Along with the standard pharmacy and over-the-counter products are a no-appointment-needed doctor on duty and beauty consultants to help shoppers with makeovers. Time-pressed customers can also use such amenities as a cell phone charging station.
The design of the Up Market convenience foods area on the store’s mezzanine is fresh, fun and contemporary with such touches as black-and-white subway tile, quartz-topped stand-up counters, sleek reach-in coolers and a playful text wall, CBX said. Wall Streeters on hand for a quick lunch or coffee break can still keep an eye on the market thanks to a 20-foot NYSE ticker.
“On other hand, the nail bar and hair salon were designed to create a serene break from the hustle and bustle of Wall Street,” stated Joseph Bona, president of CBX’s Retail Division. The spaces are accented with crystal chandeliers emitting a soft mauve halo glow while light music plays overhead.
“We are honored to be among the winners and very pleased to have had the opportunity to collaborate on this very special project with the progressive vision of Mike DeFazio, Duane Reade senior director of store concepts, and retail consultants Joe Jackman and Vern Gomes of Joe Jackman Brands,” added Bona.
“The Duane Reade flagship on Wall Street was a huge hit with our participants of the NRF Retail Tour series,” commented Brian Dyches, international president of the Retail Design Institute. “We took more than 100 global retail executives into the space, and they were simply wowed by the ‘fit’ of Duane Reade within this iconic locale.”