Environment Furniture, Inc (EFI) will open new retail locations in July 2007 at Orange County’s prestigious South Coast Plaza and in Manhattan’s Flatiron district at 876 Broadway. EFI is committed to using sustainable materials and responsible processes to create aesthetically sophisticated designs with a true organic quality. The new showrooms are the company’s first freestanding retail outlets using conscious design throughout.
The groundbreaking spaces will reflect the company’s respect for nature. The interiors will be composed of eco/sustainable materials, from floor to ceiling. In the South Coast Plaza store, a solid wall of pure Peroba (a 100 year old reclaimed Brazilian wood used in many of EFI’s signature designs) will highlight the collections. Richly textured, 100% recyclable paper panels designed by Brazilian artist Nido Campolongo will adorn the space. Other panels have been handcrafted from reclaimed coffee sacks, adding warmth and authenticity. The Flatiron interior will take a more minimal approach, with an evolving design concept that will reflect its urban surroundings.
“This is an infusion of old and new with an organic edge,” Chief Designer and Creative Director Thomas Bina says. “If we’ve proven anything, it’s that eco-friendly furniture can also be exciting and vital, and the new stores will be a reflection of those values.”
A diverse range of EFI’s growing stable of collections will be on the floor, including the Santomer dining table, the Beam, Lotus and Laurel collections among many others. A new arrival is the expanded line of Bina Sofas, available for the first time in natural upholstery or “old truck” – an ingenious covering composed of recycled canvas from old Brazilian flat-bed truck tarps. The finished product is a rugged, artfully weathered sofa. EFI is rigorous in its commitment to sustainability – even the interiors of the sofas are filled with leftover cotton from industrial manufacturers.
EFI will also be offering organic accessories for the home. Matteo bedding will be available in a cotton/linen blend, along with a line of sheets. Vibrant Jute rugs will be offered in all-natural vegetable dye colors.
CEO Davide Berruto believes that opening on the both coasts will make a strong statement for EFI. “This will be a template for future EFI retail stores,” he says. “The interiors are being designed with eco/sustainable products. We are going to carry a few select accessories that will be organic in nature. All of these elements are important to establishing the EFI brand, and I know if we are successful we can expand to other markets.”
South Coast Plaza’s unparalleled collection of over 280 boutiques and department stores, many exclusive to California, attract visitors from around the world. The highest grossing planned retail center in the United States, South Coast Plaza has annual sales estimated to reach a record-setting $1.5 billion in 2007. Manhattan’s Flatiron district is home to landmark architecture, art and photography studios and major publishing houses. Located on the edge of Midtown East, this historic area is an emerging retail destination boasting fashion boutiques, spas and home furnishing stores. Both locations are ideal settings to accommodate EFI’s growing popularity in the emerging green living market.
Environment Furniture is built around an idea that’s as revolutionary as it is basic: the fundamentals of design come from nature. The wood used in EFI’s collections either is reclaimed or responsibly harvested, providing true diversity in both appearance and texture. In a few short years, EFI has developed a passionate following from world-renown architects, eco/sustainable organizations and members of the design community.
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