Zara Home has chosen Palma as the setting for its flagship store and to introduce a new concept developed in collaboration with Isabel López-Quesada. According to ‘Architectural Digest’, she is one of the top 100 interior designers in the world. The site selected to house this new store is an emblematic building dating back to the 30s, situated along the exclusive Borne avenue. It’s there that we spoke to Isabel López-Quesada (Madrid, 1962), just moments after this singular shop opened its doors for the first time.
“The beautiful building is a perfect base for the project,” she tells us. She highlights the improvements that have been made to enhance the architectural features of the façade. The interior presents different rooms of a house; the entrance, living room, dining room, kitchen, bedrooms, dressing rooms, bathroom and even washroom.
In fact, the store doesn’t actually have a window display. Instead, there are antique wrought iron windows through which you can spy into the rooms. “It’s very practical,” Isabel explains, “for instance, you head to the dining room and you’ll see all the crockery, glassware and cutlery on a laid table, and that helps guide you when you come to buy.”
“It’s the first Zara Home like this,” she says, and confides how proud she feels for having worked with this Spanish firm, which operates worldwide and has over 590 shops spread across five continents.
As a concept store, Zara Home aims to offer the public a sensory experience. To be more precise, they want their clients to feel at home. Isabel López-Quesada understands that “home is the place you arrive tired after a day at work, so it needs to be a peaceful space and inspire a sense of tranquillity.”
This idea is what led her to advocate “a relaxed and natural home, much like Zara Home’s décor, which offers so much in cotton and linen…” In the recently opened store, these very textiles are combined with wood and different styles of marble floors, creating an atmosphere of warmth. Natural lighting, use of a certain fragrance and a special selection of atmospheric music completes the set. This special Born store also offers a personal shopper service, unavailable in their other outlets.
Zara Home wanted to pay tribute to Palma, the place it calls its “adoptive city”. Inspired by the deep calm which can be experienced on Mallorca, it has designed an exclusive collection of natural linen (table cloths, cushions, bed linen, etc), which is currently only for sale at Born, and online.
A link with local culture is important to Isabel López-Quesada. “That’s why typical baskets are used to shop here and there’s traditional Mallorcan ‘roba de llengües’ fabric everywhere. I love the material,” she says, “I always put it in summer houses and porches. Here it is, for example, used for the headboards of a child’s bed, and mixed with other great children’s products by Zara Home.”
This interior designers has achieved in demonstrating the value of Zara Home’s products. The combination of old furniture exudes a sense of luxury without being pretentious. “I’m neither classic, nor modern; what I love is to mix, particularly handmade, authentic pieces.” For that very reason, the designer is pleased that Mallorca still offers the chance to enjoy “the genuine, the forever.”
Photos by Sara Savage & Miguel Flores Vianna