Fully refitting the new Akris boutique in its prime downtown Munich location had to be completed in next to no time, and the Swiss fashion company's discerning design guidelines specified an exquisite interior made from high-quality materials. Comprising 20 mm thick water-blasted elements made from Spanish marble, a spiral staircase was to be installed from the ground floor to the first floor. Other distinguishing features included a cloverleaf laying pattern, rounded frieze edging, and freely suspended balustrades. The limited load-bearing capacity and construction height of the ceilings on the first floor also had to be taken into account during the project. This task was successfully carried out by a superb cooperation between skilled craftsmen, project supervisors and planners.
Founded in St. Gallen, Switzerland in 1922, the Akris fashion label has since developed into one of the world's premium prêt-à-porter, or ready-to-wear, brands. This haute-couture fashion house has its own boutiques in such major cities as New York, Seoul, London, and Paris. In Germany, there are three stores so far, as well as the new establishment in Munich's Residenzstrasse.
Interior Design and Natural Stone Flooring
The architects commissioned to design and plan the refit followed clear design specifications while taking local conditions into account. The fashion label's company philosophy regarding interior design is, and always has been, "exquisite materials, simple forms, and creative, professional workmanship". The ivory-colored Spanish Crema Marfil marble, light carpets, and maple wood elements therefore create elegant, spacious surroundings for the collections, with occasional dark contrasts providing visual highlights. A wide, imposing, and gently winding marble staircase that leads the visitor to the second sales level is particularly eye catching. The water-blasted natural stone of the staircase was laid in individually cut lengths, and the sweeping balustrades are freely suspended. Throughout the ground floor, the flooring specialists from Fliesen Abel in Otzing, Bavaria prepared 60 x 60 cm marble tiles, and for the upper floor, approximately 20 x 80 cm long curved elements for the frieze edging, between which the carpet was laid. Another distinctive feature was the cloverleaf pattern, which reflects the work on the ceiling. The solid construction comprises 38 individual slabs of Crema Marfil weighing 1.8 tons each. In total, only three weeks were required for the installation. “In order to carry out a construction project during this fixed period of time and to this degree of quality, all the parties involved, have to pull together“, stated Franz Barterlsperger from Fliesen Abel. “This case succeeded beyond measure, and is unfortunately an exception.“
Quick, Light, and Sturdy Floor Construction with the Turbolight System
"In addition to expert craftsmanship, perfect flooring always requires a well-planned floor design", comments Joachim Fülle, head of codex application technology at Uzin Utz AG. There were barely three months left to transform the 300 m2 of sales area in the Munich fashion boutique. A stable and level substrate therefore had to be constructed as quickly as possible. Due to the low construction heights and the limited load-bearing capacity of the ceiling on the first floor, the only possible solution was a light and flexible floor construction. The planners decided in favor of the Uzin Turbolight System, whose optimally coordinated installation materials enable large areas to be leveled by up to 300 mm while realizing extremely low surface weight, short drying times, and high rigidity. Thus, even after the floor had just been laid with the white, quick-setting thin-bed mortar codex (Stone SX 80), a floor-grinding machine weighing roughly 600 kg was all that was required to grind the natural stones.
The Uzin Turbolight System – Design and Operation
The flexible Uzin NC 194 Turbo light-leveling mortar easily adapts itself to uneven substrates and distributes loads equally across the load-bearing undersurface. The system's second component is a renovation fleece made from high-tensile long glass fibers that are attached using a water-soluble adhesive. These combine with a third component, the codex FM 50 Turbo tile filler, to produce a high-strength fiber composite that contributes to the overall system's exceptional high-load capacity. This enables all class A load requirements for living areas as well as all class B1 and B2 requirements for office areas to be met in accordance with DIN 1055. The checks that were carried out also confirm the system's robust structure. The Uzin Turbolight System can be applied using conventional screed and filler techniques, facilitates accelerated hardening and drying, and can be used in next to no time. Impact sound reduction is 10 dB (measured using ceramic tiles in accordance with DIN EN ISO 140-8), a level that lends the entire system remarkable dampening characteristics.