“What can brown do for you?”
The United Parcel Service (UPS) motto is familiar worldwide, but during the 2008 Olympic Games, UPS discovered what Lorenc+Yoo Design could do for them. UPS chose LYD to craft a space for its guests that would provide a quiet refuge from the hustle and bustle of the Olympic Games, and give the delivery and logistics company a chance to show Chinese customers its extensive capabilities.
Calm, sophisticated and with an understated Chinese feel, the 4,000 square foot space featured four distinct areas: two dining rooms, a lounge and a bar. The space’s dominant color was, of course, brown; however, LYD accented each area with UPS’s secondary colors of yellows, gold and greens to communicate modernity and blend the aesthetic preferences of the east and the west.
Echoing the messages of openness and global opportunity delivered by UPS, there was no place where guests felt closed off from the other areas. The LYD team achieved this feeling of openness by designing “moon gates” that acted as windows throughout the space. Inspired by Asian garden elements in which gates are used to frame a particular plant or vista with a round opening, the cascading moon gates were lit internally. The last moongate featured a series of Chinese characters referring to travel and transit.
Simple graphics of Chinese dragons — a symbol of strength in Chinese mythology — along with delivery trucks and airplanes lined the walls of the space, and depicted the continuation of UPS’s Chinese services. Latticed wall separators divided seating booths over which traditionally designed lanterns hung from the ceiling.
The space feels balanced, luxurious and distinctly Chinese. Among the high-energy brand spaces created for companies to entertain their guests at the 2008 Olympic Games, UPS’s center stood out as a retreat and a great opening act in China for a company that represents business in the 21st century.