TAG: Los Angeles

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Stores

February 20 2009



The second U.S. store (after N.Y.) of the Japanese brand BAPE has become a solid street-corner anchor at 8001 Melrose Avenue in L.A. With only a few flimsy palms outside, the eye-catching, BAPE signature camo print in juicy neon tubes strikes a commanding visual presence especially at night.



Inside, a huge glass cylinder, six meters in diameter, dominates the cool 4.5-meter-high space. Inside the cylinder, sneakers revolve on conveyer belts giving both an industrial and a museum-like feel. The oldest BAPE stores in Japan have already celebrated their first decade, but in Europe and the U.S., the brand has only recently started to gain a retail presence. In addition to Japan, BAPE stores exist in Hong Kong, Paris and London, and now two in the U.S.



The L.A. store was designed by Masamichi Katayama and his company Wonderwall. The 43-year-old Katayama is well known for retail work in Japan, France, U.K., the U.S., Russia, Hong Kong and China. - Tuija Seipell

Bars

April 2 2011

Bowling alleys are right up there with curling rinks on the list of the most unlikely milieus for anything chic. Yet, at The Spare Room, on the mezzanine level of the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, both bowling and the bowling oxfords custom-designed for the newly opened lounge by George Esquivel are now decidedly in.



Celebrities and notables are seen nightly at the venue, created by nightlife wizards Med Abrous and Marc Rose and cocktail king Aidan Demarest.

The design, by the Los Angeles-based design firm Studio Collective, combines vintage, custom-tailored and new to conjure up an atmosphere of by-gone affluence.



There is the gaming parlor vibe, with its two vintage bowling lanes and custom-made sets of dominoes. And there is the speakeasy cocktail lounge scene with its lavish use of velvet, dark leather, polished dark wood, bronze, cast-iron and hardwood floors. Together, they form The Spare Room that oozes civilized illegality and pays homage to the real goings-on at the storied hotel in the 1920s. Tuija Seipell

Events

April 22 2012

We have experienced dozens of brand and product launches. Much of the time, we are not impressed. Small baby-steps, same-old-same-old, reiterations of existing and stale ideas, broken brand promises, confusing off-brand presentations, mind-numbing marketing-speak, boring PR. Blah blah blah.


 
No matter how much we are lavished and pampered with free trips and swag, if we are not impressed, we are not impressed, and we will not write about it. If it’s not cool, it’s not cool. Simply, if it does not resonate with us, we will not write about it.


 
That is the integrity you our readers expect of us, and we expect it of ourselves, too. So, when we sometimes do publish a sponsored post, we always make it clear that it is a sponsored post. This is not one of them.


 
We’ve attended Mercedes launches before and not written about them. But this time, they got us excited! The last few days in L.A. have shown us that Mercedes is serious about creating cool concepts and producing cars that are more edgy, sporty, cool and engaging for a younger audience, a group whose language they have not spoken before.


Waiters in black t-shirts with tuxedo print which makes it look like a short sleeve jacket - cool idea 

We love it that Mercedes is really trying to do something different. In cars, in events, in branching out, in their approach to reaching a new audience.


 
The “multidisciplinary festival” we attended last Thursday at The Geffen Contemporary at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in L.A. is called Transmission L.A: AV CLUB - presented by The Avant/Garde Diaries and curated by Mike D of the Beastie Boys.


Santagold performing

The festival runs from April 20 to May 6 and it is free and open to the public. It is a mixture of contemporary art, design, music, film and food.


 
The star vehicle of the event is the Mercedes-Benz Concept Style Coupé, the new midsize four-door luxury coupé scheduled for market launch next year.



With the release of the A class later this year, Mercedes started to approach the younger, savvy consumer market. They’ve had to rethink and redevelop their design strategy and marketing but, while the car drives beautifully, the look does not match the promises hinted at during the concept stage. We wanted more. Bolder, edgier, something that really does draw the eye.


 
We think this latest concept, the Mercedes-Benz Concept Style Coupé, has the potential to make a splash. This week in L.A. Mercedes certainly pulled out all the stops with the festival, celebrations and parties attended by the Who is Who in hipster L.A.





Mercedes launched this new car in a way they have not launched before. They understand that street art matters and they enlisted Mike D of the Beastie Boys to bring into this international meeting point of the avant garde his favorite artists and musicians, including Benjamin Jones, Mike Mills, Tom Sachs, Lauren Mackler from Public Fiction, Sage Vaughn, Isaac from Still House Group, Peter Coffin, Roy Choi and Will Fowler.


 
Mercedes had the new car as part of an installation with headphones you listen to while the lights above created a light show on the car, bathing the “new baby” in a cool artistic shower. Very impressive.


 
We have been to many, many car launches before and they are mostly boring. This one was different and interesting, with lots of talking points and lots of ways to engage the audience.


 
Here's a video of what the exhibition looks like. Go visit it while it’s still on! - Bill Tikos

 

 

Offices

September 28 2012

A fresh take on the office cubicle is possible! Just look at the fun little houses in which the 30 or so cubicle dwellers toil at this Los Angeles-based creative media agency.



Designed by Edward Ogosta Architecture, the 6,000-square-foot (558 sq.ft.) warehouse space initially appears like any big white space with particle-board detailing. But the seemingly bland interior reveals a number of clever ideas, all designed to spark create ideas and encourage interaction as well as provide privacy.



Ogosta named the design Hybrid Office to indicate that every main feature represents two supposedly unrelated things: something from the surrounding city and/or nature married with an office function.



The office cubicles are called House-Tables and their skyline represents that of a row of houses.



There’s a gathering space, an amphitheater-like area constructed with book cases called Book-Arena, and a tatami-covered thinking space called Sky-Cave. Tall, cone shaped hollow tree trunks have become chairs that provide individual privacy. - Tuija Seipell.

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