Affordable luxury skin and hair care brand Aesop has opened its largest global store to-date, opting for its native Australia to showcase the global flagship store in September.
Located inside the central business district of Sydney, nestled along the popular shopping strip — Pitt Street, Aesop’s new flagship joins Aesop’s other store in the city’s Central Business District (CBD), with store location already open in The Strand Arcade.
Designed with international architecture firm Snøhetta, Aesop Sydney takes inspiration from Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s Wrapped Coast, a 2.4- kilometre-long artwork that was laid out at Little Bay’s cliffs, in Sydney’s southeast, in 1969.
“Aesop Sydney brings the magnitude and equanimity of coastal escarpments to the bustling downtown environment,” explained Aesop, on its website.
As a result, the store façade features sandstone – for its links to the local cliffs and rock formations, and granite — for its reference to the pavements of Sydney’s CBD.
Inside, the store’s minimal design features slate-grey walls to evoke “a vast chamber” and host a giant stainless steel counter with deep basins, for customers to try and see products in use before purchasing.
The experiential store also features a stone staircase that leads to an amphitheatre where shoppers can watch an Aesop film or sit and relax.
Private consultations are also part of the new store concept, with three staggered sinks set up for one-on-one demonstrations and applications with an Aesop consultant.
Aesop was founded in Melbourne by Dennis Paphitis in 1987. Under Pahitis, the brand opened its first-ever store in Melbourne’s St. Kilda in 2003 before Harbert Australia Private Equity bought a minority stake in the company in 2010.
In late 2012, Aesop sold a 65% stake in its business to Brazil’s Natura Co. (owner of The Body Shop and Natura brands), before the South American cosmetic giant fully acquired the Aesop brand in 2016.
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Aesop remains headquartered in Melbourne today with stores in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia , South Korea, the U.S., UK, Hong Kong, France, Taiwan, Italy, Germany, and Brazil.