Cadillac House in Shanghai, China, is the Retail Design Institute’s 2019 Store of the Year. Claudia Cerchiara, RDI, the Institute’s International Chairman and Chair of its Awards Committee, made the official announcement July 2, 2020. “We congratulate the Cadillac House team on their impressive win that combined elements of a classic car showroom with the interactivity of an educational exhibit.” The space combines education with aspiration and brand elements “that communicate the space as clearly Cadillac,” Cerchiara explained. In addition to its distinction of Store of the Year, judges also bestowed three Innovation Awards on Cadillac House -- one each for Architecture, Customer Experience and Digital Integration.
Cadillac worked with Gensler design teams in New York, Chicago, Detroit and Shanghai on the 46,000-sq.-ft., three-level space to create an immersive visitor experience that personifies the brand. The team’s goal was to attract China’s emerging creative class.
The annual competition attracted submissions from 66 retail teams across the globe. Countries represented include: USA, U.K., Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Italy, Mexico, Saudi Arabia and South Korea. Projects eligible to enter were those opened in the 2019 calendar year.
The Ohio Chapter hosted this year’s judging. Jurors included: Laura Smith, RDI, architectural design manager, Bath & Body Works and LaSenza, L Brands; Nina Ricciardi, senior director, store design, Macy's; Vikas Srivastava, assistant vice president, store design lead, Fifth Third Bank; Heesun Kim, vice president, creative managing director, FRCH NELSON; Steve Calhoun, RDI, most recently creative director, environments, WD Partners; Eric Daniel, creative director, FITCH; and Ann Black, CID, associate dean academic and faculty affairs, University of Cincinnati.
In addition to Cadillac House, Shanghai, the judges honored another 22 projects opened in 2019 and more than two dozen Innovation Awards ranging from planning and circulation to lighting design and decorative material usage.
Cadillac House, Shanghai, joins the following winning projects that make up the Institute’s “Class of 2019” -- projects represent the “best of the best” stores opened in 2019. (The Institute’s annual "class" represents the best of the best regardless of store format or retail merchandise/service classification.)
Alaska Lounge, Seattle, Design: Graham Baba Architects, Seattle; Innovation Award for Customer Experience and Innovation Award for Materiality.
ALDI, Shanghai, Design: Landini Associates, Sydney.
Birkenstock, Venice, Calif., Design: TPG Architecture, New York City.
Fido, Montreal, Design: CallisonRTKL, New York City.
Forty Five Ten, New York City, Design: 5G Studio Collaborative, Dallas; Innovation Award for Fixturing, Innovation Award for Artistic Expression.
Innisfree, Seoul, Design: Mapos Architects, D.P.C., New York City.
Longo's, Toronto, Design: Ampersand Studio Inc., Toronto; Innovation Award for Environmental Graphic Design.
McDonald's, New York City; Design: Landini Associates, Sydney; Innovation Award for Branding; Innovation Award for Digital Integration.
Maitri, Pittsburgh; Design: High Road Design Studio, Tempe, Ariz.
Molton Brown, Dartford, U.K.; Design: Dalziel & Pow; Innovation Award for Fixturing; Innovation Award for Customer Experience; Innovation Award for Visual Merchandising.
Nestlé KitKat Chocolatory, Sao Paulo; Design: FITCH, London; Innovation Award for Digital Integration.
Nordstrom, New York City; Design: Nordstrom Store Design, Seattle, in collaboration with James Carpenter & CallisonRTKL; Innovation Award for Concept | Programming and Innovation Award for Storefront Façade.
Psycho Bunny, Miami; Design: Ædifica, Montreal; Innovation Award for Visual Merchandising.
SSG Food Market, Seoul; Design: Landini Associates, Sydney; Innovation Award for Store Planning and Innovation Award for Environmental Graphic Design.
Saks Fifth Avenue, New York City (Levels 1, 2 and Cellar); Design: Gensler and Saks Store Planning & Design, New York City; Innovation Award for Digital Integration.
Saks Fifth Avenue, New York City (Women's Shoe Salon); Design: Highland Associates and Saks Store Planning & Design, New York City.
Sarah & Sebastian, Sydney; Design: Landini Associates, Sydney; Innovation Award for Lighting Design.
Specs, Del Mar, Calif.; Design: Retail Habitats, San Diego.
Timberland, London, Design: Dalziel & Pow, London.
Time Out Market Chicago, Chicago; Design: Chipman Design Architecture, Des Plaines, Ill.; Innovation Award for Adaptive Reuse.
Whole Foods Market, Seattle; Design: D L English Design Inc., Pasadena, Calif.; Innovation Award for Localization.
XYZ Storage, Toronto; Design: Ampersand Studio Inc., Toronto; Innovation Award for Customer Experience.
About the Retail Design Institute:
Founded in 1961, the Institute is the largest and oldest association for design professionals working in the retail industry. It is a collaborative community where sharing ideas, knowledge and passion enable members to fulfill the fast-paced planning and design needs of retail. Membership includes architects, graphic designers, lighting designers, interior designers, store planners, visual merchandisers, resource designers, brand strategists, educators, trade partners, trade media and students of design.