Akmerkez into the future: concept i design a “bold” makeover for Istanbul’s premier retail center
Istanbul, Turkey (January 30, 2008) — Turkey’s leading retail center, Akmerkez, announced their 25 million dollar refurbishment plan, to a full house of guests at the luxurious Ciragan Palace Kempinski, Istanbul. Some 300 invited guests witnessed the unveiling of the new designs in a spectacular gala event set in this ancient home of Ottoman sultans on the shores of the Bosphorus.
“Tonight we celebrate our vision for the Future,” stated Mr. Raif Dinckok, member of Akmerkez’s executive management team. “We aim to maintain our No.1 status and achieve new standards of excellence for the next 15 years and beyond.” In 1995, the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) selected Akmerkez as the “Best Shopping Center in Europe.” The following year Akmerkez was given the recognition as the “Best Shopping Center in the World” by ICSC and also received the highest accolade, “Design and Development Award.”
Geoff Morrison, concept i’s Principal/Managing Director, addressed the press members; “Akmerkez simply dominates the leading edge of Turkish retail. Ready for the future, the Board of Akmerkez are absolutely committed to staying at the leading edge of global retail.”
The new work will include a comprehensive renovation of the exterior architecture, interior design, lighting, signage, and an expansive, new style restaurant and food zone. The entire center will be upgraded to achieve a new sense of luxury and lifestyle shopping, with special attention to pampering shoppers with special services and facilities.
“With this renovation, Akmerkez will be dramatically transformed,” continued Morrison. “We envisage Akmerkez as a powerful icon in itself. In the most modern way, the design is inspired by the Bosphorus (Istanbul’s famous water passage connecting Europe to Asia). The new center is conceived with luminous soft, curving forms and spaces. It is elegant and timeless, with changing personalities from day to night,” Morrison spoke of the new design. Special lighting and high technology are used to instill a magical ambiance to the center.
“You will note we are a unique, creative design studio, based in the Far East, originating in the Far West, and now designing here in Istanbul, home of the Ottomans, the center of civilizations. That really makes our work very fascinating, and we are proud to be here,” stated Morrison.