This past November, more than three centuries after London-based Fortnum & Mason opened its first and only store in 1707 in Piccadilly, the tea and fine foods purveyor debuted a new location at St. Pancras International, one of London’s main transportation gateways. Fusing retail and hospitality settings, the shop’s lighting showcases the company’s products while welcoming customers to break for tea and a light meal. The retailer tapped Speirs + Major for the lighting design, which amends the tranquil nature of the British pastime of drinking tea for the convenience of the modern traveler.
“We found it really interesting walking around the existing Fortnum & Mason store with the retail managers to understand what they need from light in relation to their brand and approach to merchandise layouts,” says Clementine Rogers, an associate partner at Speirs + Major. “The existing building [was] quite restrictive in how one can deliver accent lighting. In the new store, we were less restricted and could add accent lighting to enrich the character of the space in addition to a background level of light.”
The project was completed in just five months. Located in the station’s Arcade area, which sits underneath its train platforms, the store’s entrance is framed by two brick archway piers that measure 10.6' wide and 9.8' deep. The space melds an approximately 1,000-square-foot retail area with a 500-square-foot tea salon; including back-of-house kitchen space, the project totals 2,000 square feet. The entry arches, which form two linear shopping aisles that display Fortnum & Mason goods, are uplit with LED fixtures to highlight the architecture and extend sightlines through the store.
Wall-mounted globe sconces, lamped with 40W halogen eco-capsules, are set on custom brass backing plates and illuminate the dining space where low surrounds set the banquet seating apart from the rest of the store.
A 23W LED narrow-beam spotlight highlights the mechanisms of a 3.3'-diameter clock sculpture whose parts are extruded a partial length of the bay, creating a centerpiece installation for the entry area that leads to the tea salon. In the adjacent, parallel bay are a series of white-glass globe pendants lamped with 77W halogen eco-capsules.
Bespoke wood shelving units are fitted with integrated 20W light sheets that proffer a homogenous, luminous glow and add visual depth. The 300mm-square (0.46-inch) acrylic sheets are flanked on all sides by LED strips.
Viewed from the arcade through the glazed façade that ties together the store with its retail neighbors, the interior lighting and wood finishes cast a warm glow that is intended as much to provoke an impulse purchase as it is to encourage weary travelers to take a break.
Project: Fortnum & Mason St. Pancras International, London
Client: Fortnum & Mason, London
Interior Designer: Universal Design Studio, London
Lighting Designer: Speirs + Major, London
Photographer: James Newton
Project Size: 2,000 square feet
Project Cost: Not Available
Lighting Cost: £30,000 (approximately $48,760)
Watts per Square Foot: 1.5W
Artemide (Wall-mounted globe fixtures with 40W halogen lamps)
Fagerhult (23W LED spotlights)
Glasshut Limburg (77W halogen pendants in retail area)
iGuzzini (70W metal halide fixture for window lighting stipulated as part of tenant guidelines)
LED Linear (19.2W per meter LED uplights at brick arch entry piers and at top shelf retail displays)
LightGraphix (32W per meter LED bracket-mounted, under-arch retail display shelf lights)
Lucent (20W LED downlight in kiosk)
Rosco (20W LitePads at retail display shelf bases)