Chicago Blackhawks Flagship Store, Chicago
When planning a new flagship location, this yearâ€™s Stanley Cup champions, the Chicago Blackhawks, recruited Chipman Design Architecture to create a polished team store, plentiful in unique and immersive in-store experiences.
Contained within a historic art deco-style high rise on Chicagoâ€™s Magnificent Mile, the location was a clear fit for the store, but presented distinct challenges. Although five times larger than the teamâ€™s previous flagship, the new store was limited to a mere 1000 square feet. Historic district limitations also meant designing window displays that were relatively modest, as not to detract from the buildingâ€™s faÃ§ade.
To obtain a high-end look, the design team sourced materials that looked authentic, but would provide extended durability and fit into their limited budget â€“ for example, the porcelain tile that forges the crisp white flooring that resembles the sportâ€™s signature icy rink. Fixtures and sculptural elements, including an ice-skate chandelier, were custom made to create one-of-a-kind memorable features.
The Blackhawksâ€™ logo, crafted using the ends of actual hockey sticks, greets customers on the entry stairway up to the storeâ€™s second floor. â€œThose sticks are sponsored by local leagues in the Chicago area, reflecting the teamâ€™s generous connection with the community,â€ says Jay Miranda, design principal, Chipman Design Architecture.
Shoppers get the ultimate team experience via the storeâ€™s interactive features, including a touchscreen featuring a camera and green screen that enables fans to place themselves in the action. â€œYou can select the background image â€“ either on the ice or in the locker room â€“ and you can literally have your photograph taken with that virtual image of the player, in the scene you want, then email it to yourself right there in the store,â€ says Julie Babcock, design manager, Chipman Design Architecture.
Photography: Mark Ballogg, Chicago
flagship location, Chicago Blackhawks, Chipman Design Architecture, deco-style, high-end look, ice-skate chandelier, shopping touchscreen, chicago retail, sport store, fan store, hockey store