Polestar’s first showroom in Korea, aptly named “Destination Seoul,” can be found in Hannam-dong, Itaewon since the grand opening in December 2021. With a goal of building a sustainable society through high-performance electric vehicles, this Swedish brand prides itself on utilizing design and innovation to accelerate the move towards a more environmentally conscious mode of transportation. Open to the public for test drives and consultations, Destination Seoul will be the first point of contact for prospective buyers to truly understand what Polestar is all about. A total of ten planned ‘touch points’ around South Korea will be in operation by 2024 and each are designed to convey the sophisticated and forward-thinking philosophy embodied by the brand. Destination Seoul is made up of two floors – a spacious 753.84 square meter open floor plan within the basement level includes the handover zone and office, while the first floor houses a showroom and consulting room. A total of three vehicles can be displayed at one time.
Inspired by public spaces such as churches, galleries, and museums, the exterior experience is monolithic and graphic, creating a calm, yet impactful imprint unlike any other automotive retailer. The SL+A design team understood that Polestar brought a refreshing new perspective to the market and we translated this architecturally through clean lines, a monochromatic palette and multifunctional furniture. Inside the space, the ideology of Polestar can be felt without bold logos or visible brand slogans. Visitors enter a peaceful space greeted by the contrasting visuals of monotone metals, strong concrete interiors, and rough tiles juxtaposed next to welcoming yellow fabric sofas, a golden reception desk, and warm linear pendant lighting that quietly reinforces the Polestar brand.
We used floating wall dividers to create ‘rooms’ throughout the open concept space, resulting in a sense of tranquility and providing some privacy but also sparking curiosity for guests wondering what lies beyond. The dividers hide parts of the car, allowing the visitor to only see one car at a time. Similar to a blank canvas, Polestar can utilize these versatile dividers for story telling or even artistic statements and temporary exhibitions. The addition of this design choice brings even more printed texture into the showroom and perfectly complements the physical objects and installations.
The application of acoustic baffles to the ceiling is another big design feature, alternating with linear pendant lighting installed between the baffles to give a futuristic look. Despite serving a functional role of reducing echo in the space, the baffles also add to the gallery-like ambiance when paired with the large light boxes above the cars in the showroom. The interior furniture is multi-purpose and bestows an ultramodern look to the space. Our attention is drawn towards the large display wall that features various automobile parts and samples within the hidden drawer compartments that can be easily accessed with just a small force touch. In addition, the open bar is available for customers to feel comfortable and stay longer to explore the brand over drinks. The minimalistic design has just two exposed faucets that dispense beverages controlled by the self-serve controls on the bar iPad. Polestar has created a powerfully relevant vehicle that provides excellent driving dynamics to the world. This new showroom will help bring a strong wave of excitement and desire for electric cars that combine premium performance with environmental responsibility.
Jayeon Jeong – Team Leader
Seohae Moon – Designer
Jihae Youn – Designer
Photographer: Studio BAN