The days of bland shopping centres and retail units are dead. It's no secret, the modern shopper expects more from their shopping experience. In short, we're dealing with a more discerning buyer - one that reacts to inspiring and engaging design.
It's a progression that has seen architects and interior designers expanding their creative vision to realise some of the UK's most ambitious retail schemes. But how can we continue to push the boundaries of design without encountering prohibitive costs, impractical structural requirements or compromising the project's green credentials? According to bespoke design specialist, Design & Display Structures, the answer lies in GRP (glass reinforced plastic), a material versatile enough to realise even the most demanding design brief.
However, GRP is just part of the Design & Display Structures
solution. As a material, it offers many inherent benefits. It is lightweight, highly durable and very cost effective, especially when compared to heavyweight alternatives. Most importantly, it can be moulded to take virtually any form, colour or texture. And it is here that the company's innovative and efficient design, manufacture and installation package excels to truly set it apart in a highly competitive market. The result is an unparalleled freedom to work closely with clients to faithfully recreate their artistic vision, while keeping within time and budget constraints.
The end result is an ability to create visual masterpieces that are unlike anything else you will see anywhere on the high street, or beyond. It is a comprehensive turnkey solution that has seen the company involved with a number of high profile shopping developments, including Manchester's landmark Barton Square project - a £70million extension of the Trafford Centre. Barton Square is characterised by the distinctive Campanile Belfrey tower and Rotunda, expertly crafted by Design & Display Structures, which can be seen from miles around. Together, they have redefined the local horizon, doubling as highly effective marketing tools that can't help but catch the eye of potential shoppers far and wide.
Yet, equally as important as adding glamour to a retail building's exterior, if not more so, is the customer's experience within. While it's one thing to entice the consumer into the building, it is an altogether more challenging task to convince them to spend their cash in your store. This is an area where Design & Display Structures
can offer totally bespoke solutions, with a scope that is limited only by your floor space and imagination. Using its extensive design and manufacturing expertise, Design & Display Structures has realised a spectacular portfolio of truly unique interior features that range from double-curved serving counters, entrance markers and sculptures, to adaptable wall mounting displays and advertising features, to list just a few.
One such challenge, set out by Cable & Wireless, was to create a striking series of point of sale elements to showcase its hi-tech products within it stores. The result is a striking selection of organic, smooth, pebbled-shaped display features, with matching reception/sales desks.
While not strictly a retail application, Design & Display Structures' work at the National History Museum is a stunning example of its ability to deliver engaging centrepieces, capable of capturing the public's imagination. This involved creating a 5m walk-in sphere, which is tilted on its axis. Inside, visitors are entertained by a ton of internally mounted monitors beneath an electrified ‘twinkling star' fabric. And, in total contrast, customers at Harrod's fish market are treated to an enhanced retail experience, set against an enticing backdrop of sculpted mermaids and dancing sea life - each individually designed, manufactured and installed by Design & Display Structures.
With stores fighting harder than ever for the shopper's attention, Design & Display Structures
' proposition is clearly one that appeals to many retailers. It offers them a genuine freedom of expression, coupled with the ability to engage with customers like never before - creating an altogether more memorable shopping experience.
The combined level of efficiency and proficiency in providing stunning structures from concept to completion highlights why architects and interior designers continue to return to Design & Display Structures. It's a success story that is giving them the ability to turn their most pioneering visions into a reality, and an opportunity to truly explore a new realm of creativity.