With energy prices on the rise around the world, individuals and companies alike are finding new ways to reduce their energy consumption. Retailers are, in many ways, leading the way through creative new uses of natural light.
In this blog post, you’ll discover five retail stores, cafés, supermarkets and offices around the world that have made natural light a focus of their design. From Asia to the UK, read on to learn about five inspiring worldwide stores and offices.
Apple Store, Shanghai
Apple is known for its beautiful retail stores, and its Shanghai branch is easily the company’s finest so far. Entirely underground, the store uses natural light to keep shoppers focused while navigating its hundreds of products.
Open since the summer of 2010, Apple’s Shanghai store is an architectural wonder and an incredible shopping experience. The store is located in the Pudong area of the city, known as the home of many of China’s largest companies.
From skylights to the incredible circular glass entrance, every available square inch of Apple’s retail store is adorned with energy efficient technology. How else would a groundbreaking, environmentally-focused company light its underground stores?
Kyoob ID, Singapore
Singapore-based commercial interior design company Kyoob ID knew it had to build a special office. Lit by sunlight from huge exterior windows, the Kyoob ID office has been praised by architects and energy efficiency experts for its unique design.
With white walls and a painted ceiling, the entire Kyoob ID office is designed for the optimum level of light reflection. The company received green mark certification – a Singaporean energy efficiency certification – due to its innovative design.
Noorderparkkamer Café, Amsterdam
This innovative café was constructed using materials purchased on the Dutch local version of eBay. Built at minimal cost for optimum energy efficiency, the café uses natural light provided by large exterior openings and a white painted interior.
Stylish and minimalistic, the café is a fantastic example of Dutch design, and one of the most energy efficient buildings in the city. At night, the café’s exterior closes to give passersby an iconic black, cube-shaped landmark.
Oakham Co-op, United Kingdom
When the Midlands Co-operative Society, one of the UK’s largest independent food providers, rebuilt its Oakham store after a serious fire, energy efficiency was one of its most important priorities.
The new co-operative supermarket includes several features that have helped the company reduce its carbon emissions by 20%. Large windows provide a source of natural light, while the ‘green roof’ reduces CO2 output and produces clean air.
Built using cargo containers, London café and restaurant Wahaca has an innovative aesthetic that’s made it a hit with local diners. It’s also an incredible energy efficient building, depending almost entirely on natural light provided by large windows.
The restaurant is filled with specially commissioned art, and guests are provided not just with food, but with chili peppers to grow in their own homes. The café’s unique design and focus on energy efficiency have won it praise by environmentalists.
“Image courtesy of FGIdeas.org“