A brand-new PARK store in China’s Guandong province exemplifies how modern life, cutting-edge design and nature can come together and exist in harmony. This store has no boundaries with nature, and it showcases how the past can become the future.

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A brick storefront with a glass entrance and a "Park by balabala" sign covered in greenery.

DUTS Design completed this project, an extensive renovation of a century-old house that has become a colorful, modern store. But it’s much more than just a store. This is a place for gathering, for fashion and for enjoying nature.

Related: Residential building from the ’60s gets an energy-efficient remodel

The brick storefront flanked by trees on either side.

The fashion is provided by Balabala. The storefront’s architecture draws from Eastern and Western influences, while also incorporating modern and traditional designs. Little details such as brick carvings, sculptures, gables, and gates with a dragon design showcase the integration of these styles. The silhouette of the design mimics traditional housing in the region.

To the left, a green wall by a steel staircase. To the right, a children's clothing store.

Existing elements of the building were saved. That includes the facade, which was almost completely retained. A brick carving on the roof represents the Eight Immortals Crossing the Sea. This has been left completely intact.

A children's clothing store with a futuristic style and blue lighting.

The design is based on a traditional concept: three halls with three courtyards. There is a central axis that makes it easy to get to the outdoor courtyards and interior patios. The beauty of the natural world is all around. Meanwhile, the busy city is just right outside.

A PARK by balabala sign in neon blue and yellow, against a glass wall encasing green plants.

A green wall uses plants to create a mini tropical rain forest. The steel staircase is transparent to provide an airy, open feeling. Mirrors throughout the space create a sensation of being surrounded by the vastness of nature.

To the left, a gray hallway with a glass box encasing green plants. To the right, a connected yellow stairwell.

Gray bricks represent the past and are integrated into the design with modern metals. Bright pops of yellow make the space vivid and fresh. There’s also a children’s play area, a place for afternoon tea, a coffee bar, retail spaces and more to explore. This lifestyle center marries commerce, public spaces, green design and recreation into a location where visitors can shop, relax and have fun.

+ ArchDaily

Photography by Jack Qin