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Design showcase: The new Wines & Spirits department at Harrods

The new Wines & Spirits section in the Food Halls at Harrods has been introduced as part of a two year restoration project known as the ‘Taste Revolution,’ which represents the biggest redesign project in the 180 year history of the landmark department store.

Design is by Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, with inspiration taken from the Art Deco style of the era of The Great Gatsby. The department echoes the glamour, romance and vintage chic of the 1920s to provide a retail space dedicated to sensual pleasures.

The department is on the lower ground floor of Harrods and measures 500 sq m (5,382 sq ft). The space is subdivided into different product selections, though there are sightlines along the ceiling to reveal the extent of the department. 

Shopfitting group Umdasch was appointed to build an interior that blended with the rest of the historic Knightsbridge building, and provided an environment suitable for selling an exclusive range of high quality wines and spirits.

A black and white marble floor is matched with whitewashed oak wall panels, which are dotted with copper design elements. Chilled glass display cases – known as Hero Shelves – are used to display the merchandise. Cupboards are concealed in the walls, while some freestanding units have a mirrored finish.

Subdued lighting is used to create a suitable atmosphere, and to protect the valuable wine collection from heat or UV rays.

Customers are able to sample and purchase rare vintages in tasting areas, and there are two private areas: a tasting room which hosts exclusive wine events, and a consulting area dedicated to individual expert advice for customers. Cigars can be purchased and tried with a glass of spirits in a walk-in humidor.

Island stations also provide an immersive and sensual experience, where customers can play and experiment with aroma. Glass bell jars contain a series of exhibits which reflect scents from certain wines. Ripe apricots, dark coffee beans and sweet blossoms are among the scents offered. Trumpet-like copper extensions of the jars emit notes of the important noble grape varieties.