Bape presents special collection for the opening of its first European store
After Asia and the USA, premium Japanese streetwear label A Bathing Ape has opened its first Bape store in Europe. The label first established a foothold in the continent via a retail corner at London's Selfridges department store, but it chose Paris for its first monobrand shop, opened on 1st December at 34 rue de la Verrerie, in the hip Marais district, in a space belonging to BHV Marais. Bape was created in Japan in 1993 and now belongs to Hong Kong-based group IT, and is also present at the Galeries Lafayette department store in Beijing.
The 140 m2 Parisian shop's interiors feature a clean, pared-down style, with a grey marble slab floor and steel-panelled walls. The label's collections are showcased inside two rooms, in which nothing distracts from the products on display. Behind the counter, pride of place goes to an illuminated ape head, Bape's logo. Sneakers and t-shirts are lined up on glass-fitted marble shelves, while hoodies and other tops are hung on racks or displayed in glass-topped counters.
"The monochrome, futurist interiors are brightened at the back of the store by an artwork by US artist Adam Lister, famous for reinterpreting classic painting masterpieces using an abundance of pixels," wrote the label with the Galeries Lafayette group.
Within this ambience, Bape presented a special collection exclusively designed with Paris in mind. It features a new take on the French flag's red, white and blue colours, with a camo twist. The ever-present Eiffel Tower is another strong design element, reproduced on t-shirt, sweatshirts and accessories. For the store's inauguration, Bape also presented a collaboration with Mastermind Japan.
Bape currently operates 33 stores worldwide, and the Paris one is only a step in its expansion plan. The label has scheduled a new inauguration in Los Angeles for early 2018, and heralded the opening of more new stores in "several exclusive locations around the world."
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