Aesop Kawaramachi Shop is a minimalist interior created by Tokyo-based firm Torafu Architects. The Aesop brand is originally from Australia with this particularly branch situated in Kyoto, Japan. The elongated space is characterized by a large atrium with a ceiling height of 6.2 meters. The architects were careful not to disrupt the existing framework, and to only make subtle tweaks to the original structure.


The result is a bare-minimum renovation of a “factory-setting” interior space replete with unpainted exposed concrete walls and exposed ceiling pipes. The ceiling height closer to the entrance is relatively lower than the back of the space, which opens up to a dual-level showroom. The upper floor is meant to serve as a hospitality suite for customers to relax and mingle, and is also utilized as a gallery.

The lighting is a mixture of recessed high hats as well as unique squid fishing boat lights that coalesce with the ceiling’s industrial piping. Neutral-colored flexible board was used for the shelving in order to help pronounce the product selection, while a light-green accent is seen in the fixtures, staircase, and glasswork in order to promote a relaxing and calming atmosphere.