3.1 Phillip Lim
631 North Robertson, West Hollywood
Architect: PARA Project with OFFICE Giancarlo Valle
Brooklyn-based Para Project, along with Manhattan-based OFFICE/Giancarlo Valle, recently transformed a 5,000-square-foot former auto body plant in West Hollywood into Phillip Lim’s third fashion boutique. The building’s windowless facade lets the fashion be experienced intimately, said Para architect Jonathan Lott, who added that his ﬁrm worked on “changing the typography of the typical storefront.” The closeness of the entry is drawn out as amoeba-shaped walls unwind into distinct niche rooms with varied styles. The rooms display clothing on thick recessed curving partitions juxtaposed to mirrors, creating the illusion that the rooms are actually circular, and “making the store’s layout less aware of the geometry of the box,” said Lott. The space’s unwinding character brings about what Lott describes as a “prolonged experience,” spreading exposure to the merchandise over a winding path. The intricate design—as opposed to the minimal clothing display—also contrasts to artiﬁcially lit back rooms with soft, spiky walls and adjacent sky-lit spaces where the surfaces are made of bamboo, cork, and leather.