The prestigious company from Valencia, Porcelanosa Grupo, will climb the next step in their international expansion, this coming September. After summer, the official inauguration of the Spanish company´s new branch in New York will take place. The chosen location is the iconic Fifth Avenue, right in the heart of Manhattan and only a short distance from many emblematic constructions such as the Flatiron building and the Empire State building.
The Commodore Criterion building designed in 1918 by the architects Ely Jacques Kahn and Albert Buchman, will house Porcelanosa Grupo’s new flagship store, after the integral reform of its façade and interiors, to be carried out by Foster + Partners, led by Norman Foster, an internationally renowned architect. The selection of this prestigious architect was not by accident as pointed out by Cristina Colonques, Director of Communication and Marketing at Porcelanosa Grupo, in the company´s own official magazine, Porcelanosa Lifestyle Magazine: “The name Foster, united with the location of the building, will strongly contribute to our company in the face of the internationalisation of the brand”.
Porcelanosa Grupo’s new showroom has found a home in a historic property that includes parts that have been necessarily preserved in the refurbishment project, given its grade listed protection. In this sense, Taba Rasti, co-director and partner in the Madrid office of Forster + Partners, from where the project development was carried out, commented on the cited publication, identifying the objectives of the integral reform. According to Rasti, the purpose of the project has been “to carefully restore the façade and to make modifications to the building, in order to bring natural light into the ground floor and basement interiors, as well as creating visual connections between the various storeys, plus the creation of mezzanines as a way of linking the various spaces”. The project has also allowed the substitution of old floor/roof framing, for new fireproofed ones. The building’s upper storeys have been designated as offices, whilst the top floor, which boasts spectacular views, has been reserved for public events.