Crooks and Castles
455 North Fairfax Avenue
Crooks and Castles sounds like a video game, but it is actually a young men’s clothing emporium that has relocated from Hollywood to an expansive storefront on a gentrifying block of Fairfax in midtown Los Angeles. Architect Adam Wheeler stripped a former thrift store, sealing the patched concrete floor, exposing the ceiling ducts and joists, and retaining one patinated brick wall. Those relics provide a raw backdrop for elegant walnut display cabinets, a cantilevered sales desk, and two Schindler-esque, wood-framed sofas.
To the rear are offices and a future recording studio. The interior is framed by a portico, lined with Western red cedar, which serves as a gathering place by day and can be sealed off by pocketing glass sliders on the inner side and a roll-down shutter on the street. This opening allows the owners to drive an exotic car or motorbike into the store to lure their testosterone-fuelled customers.