SSG Food Market

Landini Associates
South Korea

The SSG Food Market in Dogok, Seoul is the reinvention of ‘market’ for the modern world. It’s not a supermarket, food hall or convenience store; nor is it a dining precinct, dining room or food court. It’s full of specialists, independents and E-marts, all jostling together in one space. It’s a convenient and accessible food lover’s heaven, where locals can do a daily or weekly shop, eat with friends at one of the in-store restaurants and cafes, or just pass through on the way somewhere else.

SSG came to Landini with a desire to reinvent its Food Market offer and brand in line with global food trends and new customer expectations. Every customer touchpoint was to be redesigned, including the built environment, naming and identity, furniture and fixtures, signage and communications, ticketing, menus, POS, advertising style guides, packaging and uniforms.

The challenge was to create a tangible whole with multiple offers, multiple tenants and multiple brands. Landini aimed to create a ‘neutral personality’ with a distinguishable aesthetic, yet one subservient to the personalities that live within it. The design is intended to last beyond the fashions of the day, and to have minimal embedded energy allowing the product and people who enjoy it to be king.

SSG Food Market has become the new ‘must go’ place to eat, shop and be seen in Seoul. Within two minutes of the doors being unlocked, queues form at multiple counters. In another ten minutes, the 200-plus-seater restaurant is full. It stays that way till it shuts 12 hours later. It goes to show what can be achieved by a client with tenacity and vision, and a design team empowered to reinvent every detail of the customer experience.

Photography: Trevor Mein.