150,000-square-foot top-end department store on the outskirts of Toronto. A spacious but understated Shaker-style home in the Long Island hamlet of East Hampton. A Bijoux Intermix boutique on Miami Beach’s bustling Lincoln Road. A penthouse pied-à-Terre in Manhattan’s iconic London Terrace.
At first, such varied projects don’t seem like they have anything in common, let alone like they’re all the work of the same designers. But the architects behind this impressive array — the three partners of the small New York-based firm Janson Goldstein — see a close connection between their elite retail work and their high-end residential commissions.
“what their lifestyle is, and then create something around that.”
From its very start, in 1995, the firm has aimed to foreground modernist principles and aesthetics in its work, while also combining the disciplines of architecture and interior design under one roof.
When Goldstein and Janson first set off on their own, they did so without any clients immediately in tow.“We had some time to design the business.” Work — and recognition for it — quickly followed, however, especially in the retail field, with commissions from Calvin Klein, Giorgio Armani and Donna Karan pouring in one after the other. A few year’s after the firm’s founding, a loft they designed in New York’s Flatiron neighborhood was featured in Interior Design. Shot by noted lensman Paul Warchol, This, followed by attention-grabbing projects for Armani and a redo of Ferragamo’s Fifth Avenue flagship, firmly established Janson Goldstein’s bona fides.
“So much of this business is the trust that the client puts in you, and my having been in the position of being the client helps to ease that.”
Earning clients’ trust has served the firm well. one of their residential projects landed the Holy Grail of design-publication placements: the cover of Architectural Digest.
“We were constantly looking at the details and the language of Shaker architecture, and how it all relates to modern and open space,” he says.”
Goldstein designed the house to be only one room in depth on the ground floor, while upstairs a spine-like hallway on one long side connects the bedrooms on the other. “All the windows open up, and you get air and light all the way through, all day long,” says Goldstein, who notes the home barely ever requires air-conditioning. “It’s a modern country home,” he says by way of conclusion.
Such careful attention to detail and process, form and function, as well as an easy, understated way with luxe finishes, fixtures, and fittings.Take, for example, the high-end department store Holt Renfrew, which is Canada’s answer to Barney’s or Saks.
For the last several years, the firm has also been working with the high-end, multi-brand fashion chain Intermix.
Homeowners have long come to the firm looking for the same sort of high-gloss polish, sophistication, and materials they’ve seen in its boutiques, but it seems that now retailers also want the more personal touches found in the residences Janson Goldstein creates. “Increasingly, retail clients are asking us for designs that are unique to their neighborhoods, to their cities,” Janson explains.
And that makes sense. After all, who wouldn’t want to feel as comfortable shopping as when cozily holed up at home — in East Hampton, say, with the windows thrown open to let in the cool evening air?