Illuminated façade made from PLEXIGLAS® plates

© Evonik

Illuminated, eye-catching façades in the advertising jungle

With a plethora of advertisement boards vying for the attention of passersby, it isn’t exactly easy to stand out from the crowd. Thanks to its illuminated PLEXIGLAS® façade, the new Victoria’s Secret flagship store is hard to miss – even in Shanghai’s urban jungle.

The PLEXIGLAS® sheets drape the building on Shanghai’s Huaihai Road like a curtain of light. Given the numerous shops that already line the road and the several thousand visitors every day, an original store concept just isn’t enough to attract customers. The façade – illuminated in the pink trademark color of Victoria’s Secret – immediately grabs the visitors’ attention and gives them a hint of what they can expect inside: a touch of glamor and, of course, exclusive lingerie.

Meeting the demands of the Chinese middle classes

Evolution in acrylics is our passion

This topic is a fine example of what “Evolution in acrylics is our passion” – the vision of Evonik’s Acrylic Products business unit – expresses, and what Evonik means by smart concepts in the chemical business. Read more about why evolution is part of the DNA of PLEXIGLAS®, why passion is so important in new projects, and how Evonik’s expertise will advance the development of this material in the years to come.

Victoria’s Secret is treading new paths on the Chinese market. While customers were able to buy accessories and beauty products in the 26 stores across the country, the entire product range, in particular the company’s sought-after lingerie collection, has only previously been available in flagship stores. However, customers did not have access to one of these flagship stores in the largest market in the world.

But given that the purchasing power of the Chinese population is continuing a steady upward trend, especially in major cities, now seems to be the perfect time for luxury brands to expand into the Chinese market. Shanghai currently has the highest income per capita of all Chinese cities, which has encouraged many global brands to open stores in the city’s malls and on shopping streets. The lingerie brand’s new store on Huaihai Road, for example, was previously home to a Louis Vuitton flagship store of over 1,500 square meters. From now on, Victoria’s Secret will be showcasing and selling its renowned lingerie from the four-story building, enabling women to feel like models.

Eye-catching PLEXIGLAS® with engravings

But the new Victoria’s Secret flagship store in Shanghai has much more to offer than elegant lingerie made from delicate fabrics and attractive designs. With a pinkish hue by day and bright pink at night, the building’s exterior façade is also a true eye-catcher. The façade is made up of 104 PLEXIGLAS® sheets at a size of 2×6m, 2×4m and 2×1m illuminated with a total of 400 meter LED LIGHTS. The designers of MBM Construction Wall Engineering Ltd. chose Evonik’s brand acrylic glass because of its high transparency and flexibility.

With a transparency of up to 92 percent, PLEXIGLAS® creates a transparent and clear look. Its elegant surface structure is also quite striking, with numerous thin lines engraved into the sheets to produce an eye-catching pattern. What is more, this structure ensures better light distribution and makes the façade shine in a shimmering hue. “The PLEXIGLAS® façade clearly stands out from the other glass façades on nearby buildings,” says Benjamin Ling, Senior Vice President of Evonik Performance Materials Asia Pacific. “Nowadays, as people increasingly focus on the combination of functionality and aesthetics, PLEXIGLAS® improves design freedom and diversification, making our lives more colorful.”

Grand Opening of Victoria`s Secret Shanghai Flagship Store

Be an angel

There is hardly any other lingerie brand that is as popular as Victoria’s Secret. The company’s fashion shows are iconic. Every model dreams of floating down the runway with the famous angel wings. Joining the ranks of the “Victoria’s Secret Angels” enabled fashion models such as Heidi Klum, Miranda Kerr and Adriana Lima to kick-start their international careers. But the brand also offers a huge range of products for ordinary people.

© Victoria’s Secret

Transparent and weather-proof material

In light of the fact that façades are exposed to the elements day after day, the designers were looking for a material with long durability. “Compared with glass, PLEXIGLAS® not only has higher light transmission, but it also has outstanding weather-resistant properties. With these properties, the materials retain high transmission even after being exposed to the sun for a long time”, enthuses Jones Ma, Project Manager at MBM Construction Wall Engineering Ltd. “This meets our requirement for long-lasting façade.”