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DIOR MEN OFFICES
OLIVER HELBERT

DIOR MEN OFFICES

antonio virga architecte as Architects

CONTEXT Former commercial premises are transformed into style offices and haute couture workshops to gather the Dior Men department on one site. The block develops on six levels (basement to R + 4), with a main building on the rue de Marignan and wings back on the impasse Bourdin. On pre- existing first floor terrace overlooking the impasse, a wood-frame house adjoining the gable wall is demolished and an extension replaces it. The existing house had been deprived of its ground floor when the existing terrace was constructed. The extension, in particular thanks to the passageway and canopy,


creates a meaningful dialogue with the existing site by giving back good proportions to the terrace.


THE EXTENSION An extension including new shared areas and a covered outdoor walkway is grafted to the building. To revitalize the existing architectural style, without distorting or faking the preserved facades, this extension features a deliberately contemporary style and is


widely opened to the terrace. To emphasize the intervention, the extension is slightly elevated and detached from the wall. LED lights reinforce the impression of an object placed at the heart of


Paris heritage. The choice of materials confirms this game of contrasts: wood, glass and metal meet to offer a timeless architectural vocabulary. Framed in black, the extension is highlighted : the vertical lines try to repeat the sequence of existing windows, while the diagonal on the canopy are to be imagined


as a reinterpretation of the old Parisian glass roofs. On the dead end, two new windows shed light on the ground floor. A glass roof that enlivens the terrace is created to bring more natural light.


ENTRY SEQUENCE The main entrance door to the Marignan street is amended to create both a visible call during the day and a protected site at night. Here again, the materials , metal and glass, enhance the historic character of the place in a both radically modern and sober manner. The reception is totally refined in order to let the brand be fully activated: only the ceiling, the logo and a digital display showing the latest fashion shows


enliven the room. INTERIOR DESIGN The furniture includes concealed storage for more clarity, in line with the very refined treatment of these new premises. The elevators shafts are stripped and now display their original grid as a tribute to the history of the place. The curve of the stairs is highlighted by a wide black ribbon which runs on each floor, as a reminder of the architectural signature of the extension.

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