At a ceremony at the Four Seasons Hotel Ballroom in Las Vegas, the Association for Retail Environments (A.R.E.) awarded Woolworths flagship Waterstone store in Somerset West the Grand Prize for Design in the Supermarket / Grocery category. The awards honoured all aspects of retail design from around the world, and winning projects were located in the U.S., Chile, China, Turkey, Italy, Singapore and France. Woolworths was the only winner from South Africa, and joined an illustrious group of winners including RH Restoration Hardware, Karl Lagerfeld, Apple, Under Armour and Whole Foods.
Conceived by an in-house design team, Woolworths Waterstone store was recognised by the A.R.E. for its intuitive layout, simple and consistent signage, and raw and natural materials. According to the A.R.E.: Custom gondolas of concrete, steel, brick, tile, oak and reclaimed wood hold bulk items, while steel and reclaimed timber tables present merchandising displays. Fluorescent and metal halide lamps accent the store, with natural light brought in with skylights. Shops within the shop, such as a sushi counter, butchery, fishmonger, and a stylish cafe, break up the space and keep the store’s original boutique feel.
The A.R.E. Design Awards are judged by an independent panel of respected retail professionals from around the world.
Commenting on the award, Zyda Rylands, Managing Director of Food at Woolworths said, “We are very proud to accept this award, particularly as it is for a store we are so passionate about. Waterstone is our biggest Woolworths food market to date and reflects the latest view of our ‘food market of the future concept’ as we continue our journey of becoming a big foods business.”
In keeping with Woolworths Good Business Journey, the store also features a number of ‘green’ design elements, such as natural light from skylights and a system that automatically dims the store’s lights in bright daylight conditions. The store also recaptures waste heat from refrigeration to heat the store, and the fridges in the store use a natural gas which does not harm the ozone layer.