This is a new boutique for world renowned and award winning London based chocolatier William Curley. It is our second project for William and involved the complete fit-out of a small 30m2 (325ft2) retail space in Smiths Court in Soho.

Project name: William Curley Boutique
Firm Name: Jonathan Clark Architects
Project size: 30 m2
Completion date: 2020
Building levels: 1
Location: London, United Kingdom
Photographer: Richard Dean

©Richard Dean

William Curley’s creations have achieved over 30 gold awards at The Academy Of Chocolate Awards. Signature chocolates include classic British flavours such as the award winning Thyme & Scottish Heather Honey, Rosemary & Olive Oil, and Juniper & Blackcurrant. Japanese inspired flavour combinations also run through the business. Award winning chocolates include Japanese Black Vinegar, Yuzu and Apricot & Wasabi for those with more adventurous taste buds.

The interior reflects the juxtaposition of unexpected flavour pairings by using different finishes, colours and textures not always used together but work to create a harmonious whole.

©Richard Dean

On the right wall on entry are 25 whitewashed pitch pine constructed boxes of differing sizes hovering ‘randomly’ within a rigid dark stained pine framework within a mirrored wall that rises up from whitewashed pitch pine storage base units and carries across the ceiling. The box theme is transferred to the ceiling with 41 more pitch pine constructed boxes of varying sizes suspended within the dark stained pine beam framework. All of these boxes have a vivid orange internal lid – over half of them have suspended pendant lights ‘falling’ out of them.

The boxes floating up and down the wall are used for display purposes – all are internally lit and most have mirror backs for a greater display effect. The remainder have silver or gold leaf painted backs for a touch of luxury within a palette of natural materials. This also reflects the nature and ethos of William Curley’s chocolates.

©Richard Dean

One of the main ideas behind the design of the interior was to think about chocolate in terms of it’s origins and how it is procured – designing a predictable dark brown interior to ‘represent chocolate’ was something we actively avoided. The custom-made coloured blown glass lighting pendants were designed to loosely resemble cocoa pods – the varied colours resembling the different stages of cocoa pod ripeness. Orange is actually a colour that cocoa pods pass through on their way to full ripeness and this colour also being William’s favouritecolour is featured throughout.

Central to the space is a bespoke Calacatta marble clad climate controlled display cabinet for display of individual chocolates and patisserie. To left on entry is a painted triptych by Flora Roberts depicting a semi-abstract interpretation of cocoa tree branches which forms a backdrop to the activity of the display wall and interesting reflections within the mirrored panel between the vertical frames. Lastly the floor continues the box theme with a graphic black and white squared ceramic floor.

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