Aedas recently announced that Steve Barnes is appointed the Executive Director of Aedas Interiors. Steve will lead a specialist retail interiors team and collaborate closely with the architectural teams to deliver tailored and holistic design solutions in response to the shifting retail landscape in a post-pandemic world. In this interview with SEAB, Steve talks about his role and the design trends ahead.
SEAB: Congratulations on joining Aedas Interiors as the Executive Director. What is your key role?
STEVE: I will lead a specialist retail interiors team and collaborate closely with the architectural teams to deliver tailored and holistic design solutions in response to the shifting retail landscape in a post-pandemic world.
SEAB: You are bringing in over 30 years of interior design experience across retail, hospitality, corporate and residential sectors to Aedas. As a specialist in retail design and branding, what kind of solutions are you interested in developing?
STEVE: As a specialist in retail design and branding, I am particularly experienced in creating customer-centric design solutions with strong narratives underpinning the creative process and built work. Over the years, I have led the design and implementation of numerous high-profile shopping malls, high street stores, department stores and retail roll-outs across Asia Pacific and Middle East. When you combine a visionary client with great innovative design the results can be transformative. At Aedas Retail Interiors, we understand every project is different and our philosophy is always to create truly unique and innovative design solutions for each project.
“I am excited to join Aedas to have the opportunity to collaborate and work with some of the most talented designers in the industry.
I look forward to building on the great retail interiors portfolio of Aedas and creating more amazing designs with Aedas.” – Steve Barnes
SEAB: How did you develop an in-depth understanding of the commercial interests of both developers and retail business owners?
STEVE: It is due to my experience in large-scale mixed-use retail developments as well as multi-brand environments and high street stores. It is important to build long-term relationships and engage with multiple shareholders to ensure the highest standards of design delivery and the success of every project.
SEAB: How has retail design changed during the post-pandemic world?
STEVE: We are witnessing a grand evolution in retail design, increasingly driven by a new younger and growing consumer group since the pandemic. The new values of these tech natives and the advent of big digital retail infrastructure platforms and social media has led to consumer-centric, experience driven retail solutions, with ethics, sustainability, personalization, convenience, and healthy lifestyle at its heart. Brands are adapting, malls will need to follow, as they align with the new consumer and these values.
SEAB: Can you briefly tell us two design trends in the retail landscape?
STEVE: Malls will still be tailored to the markets and communities they serve, but the greatest future malls will share 1) a new vision with flexibility, indoor-outdoor spaces, changing retail, destination, food and experience, and 2) a true omni-channel platform where the online and offline are seamlessly integrated into a fully connected experience.