Following the success of their US debut on Melrose Place, Designer Tia Cibani opens Ports 1961's second boutique in the center of New York City's historic meatpacking district.
Designed by architect Michael Gabellini, the store's interior unfolds as a meandering animated narrative of movement, set to a layered backdrop of translucent scrims and veils reflecting projected imagery.
The inherent qualities of twisted nickel bars and floating lucite shelves provide understated elegance and sculptural balance. American walnut floors and handmade carpets add natural warmth. The space is open and intimate, creating an environment of modern refinement with a spirited casualness.
Illumination and color infuse the space with a sense of place and atmosphere. The lighting concept combines filtered light veils, saturated luminescent planes and rhythmic lines of direct light. An open floor to ceiling skylight exposes the center room to various gradations of natural daylight to moonlight, emphasizing various aspects of the collections cut, color and form.
Special attention was given to preserving the quality of the historic neighborhood through a notable effort to restoring the exterior façade of the 3 Ninth Avenue building. A sleek wedge of zinc and glass was introduced to the landscape to juxtapose the traditional look with the modern; reflecting Tia's unique and sophisticated designs.
The retail level of the three story historic building will present the seasonal collection as well as a gallery of limited edition items including collectible books, music and object art collected along Cibani's travels. Tia draws her inspiration from a vast source of historic and ethnic references, resulting in a collection of richly colored and uniquely textured fabrics. The intimate setting of the second floor will host local artist events and the third floor will serve as Tia's design studio.
Ports 1961 is located in the West Village neighborhood of Manhattan. The western slice of Greenwich Village—although some will tell you it's a separate neighborhood altogether; don't listen to them—the West Village is a somewhat sleepier version of its larger neighborhood, with many tree-lined streets populated by residential buildings and punctuated ever-so-lightly with restaurants and bars. The locals have fought notoriously hard throughout the years to keep raucous bars and clubs from staying open—or even opening at all—to preserve the relative quiet of their neighborhood. The West Village stretches east from the Hudson River to 6th Avenue, and north from Houston Street to West 14th. It's northwestern corner is chewed off by the Meatpacking District, where the very sorts of restaurants and bars West Village residents try to keep out of their 'hood flourish. The majority of Bleecker Street's dining, shopping, and drinking options exist on the West Village's end of the street, with a small shopping mecca surrounding the intersection of 7th Avenue, where many high-end retailers have stores, like Brooks Brothers' Black Fleece, Comptoir des Cotonniers, Burberry, Marc Jacobs, and a whole lot more. There's plenty of history here, and the bars are no exception—Dylan Thomas famously stumbled out of the White Horse Tavern heavy with whiskey on the night he expired at the Hotel Chelsea. For those aiming to avoid the thumping, throbbing nightclubs of the Meatpacking District, jazz can be had at Fat Cat, the legendary Village Vanguard, and smaller, quieter establishments like 55 Bar. If you'd like a more structured day of drinking, the folks at the Literary Pub Crawl put on a fantastic and informative tour. The sophisticated residents of the West Village have led a number of excellent restaurants to open in the neighborhood, from Italian favorite Sant Ambroeus, April Bloomfield's game-changing gastropub The Spotted Pig, Yerba Buena, and Perry St.. Of course, if you're not in the mood for high-end cuisine in mood-inducing settings, there's pizza on offer at John's of Bleecker Street, but you'd be better served by walking a little further east and feasting one our favorite New York slice at Joe's. And if it's a burger you're looking for, the city's first Umami Burger is lurking over on 6th Avenue, while perennial favorite Corner Bistro is on 7th. While the West Village is low on museums, it has two of the best independent cinemas in the city between Film Forum and neighborhood landmark IFC Center.
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