A Beautiful Translation

The Aveda Tokyo Lifestyle Salon and Spa was recently honored with the Store of the Year Award in the Annual Institute of Store Planners/VM+SD International Store Design Competition. The company's first holistic beauty facility in Japan, designed by FRCH Design Worldwide, Cincinnati, OH, was inspired by Aveda's mission and vision statement: to connect beauty, environment and well-being. The salon, said the jurors, is "the ultimate example of how those values can translate into a built environment." It also lauded the salon for "its confident use of materials" and for "pushing the brand in a new direction in a powerful fashion."

Indeed, the facility artfully blends the company's desire to inspire, nurture and connect people who aspire to a lifestyle grounded in wellness, healing, spirituality, fashion and environmental stewardship. (The word "Aveda" means "all-knowledge" in Sanskrit and was chosen by company founder Horst Rechelbacher because it reflected his belief in a holistic approach to taking care of hair that also required attending to the body.) The salon was constructed using many locally-sourced and recycled materials with an intent to minimize its ecological footprint. For example, walls in the spa treatment rooms were made of soil, straw, sand and watery clay that solidifies naturally without any synthetic hardening agents or excess energy.

Energy consumption and air quality concerns were top-of-mind. The salon, positioned on the second floor, allows effective and efficient use of ample natural daylight, thus reducing the space's dependence on artificial light. Natural light also lends itself to hair coloring services. In addition, rooftop solar panels help offset energy needs.