Books, Books and More Books!

July 31, 2011

In this post we are looking at Bookstore design. With all the controversy over the recent Borders announcement that they are going into liquidation we have been questioning the viability and longevity of the high street stellar, the Bookstore. With online book ordering levels on Amazon at an all time high, we have to wonder, has the bookstore reached its shelf life?

Perhaps large chains such as Borders and Waterstones who have a plethora of stores face the biggest challenge due to their size and value in the market, however we at Studio EM sincerely hope that bookstores continue to be around for a long time to come, as the experience, the smell the comfort and the ability to browse of a good bookstore cannot be replicated by online retailers. For us, shopping for books is about the experience as much as it is about the end goal.

Here are a selection of bookstores that we have come across that offer the customer that unique experience that a website cannot. It is because of stores like these that we continue to enjoy the old fashioned method of purchasing a book and we continue to support our local bookstores with our custom.

We have selected these store primarily due to their unique design concepts.

Kid’s Republic was designed by Japanese Architect Keiichiro Sako. The concept behind this store is that it is an interactive arena geared towards kids, hence the name. However the design leads itself towards adults, encouraging them to interact with the children whilst browsing the books. They have also incorporated a story telling area where kids and adults can come and listen to all the latest books being recited from guest readers, authors or other book enthusiasts. The design and the concept is something that we really applaud and enjoy.

Then next on our list is a bizarre, unique and extraordinary project in Maastricht, Netherlands, the bookstore Selexyz Dominicanen designed by Merkx+Girod Architects. Merkx+Girod were commissioned by the Dutch booksellers to convert the interior of the former Dominican Church in Maastricht into a modern bookstore. The results of which is truly different, and we include it in this post due to its wow factor.

The last store we want to look at is this bookstore, the Livraria de Vila bookstore in Sao Paulo, Brazil designed by local architect Isay Weinfield.