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Trends We Love: Dichroic Glass

Updated: Jun 13, 2019

Rem Koolhaas-designed dichroic glass escalators at the newly-renovated Saks Fifth Avenue in Manhattan

In this new series, we'll be discussing new and upcoming design trends that we're staunchly in favor of. We can't think of a better first installment than a tribute to dichroic glass. For those unfamiliar with the term, dichroic refers to glass that has been treated to display two different colors depending on the lighting or direction upon which the glass/material is viewed.

Rem Koolhaas pictured alongside his design for the CCTV building in Beijing

Though it's a bold look, it's opportunities for incorporation into interior design are truly limitless. Only just recently I was shopping at Saks for the ABT Spring Gala and finally got to see the completely renovated ground floor and mezzanine. Saks has moved its boisterous cosmetics section up one floor and now displays their real money-makers (handbags and accessories) on the ground floor. And the undeniable showstopper here is the dichroic-clad central escalators along with the surrounding glass railings. The design is compliments of Dutch architect, Rem Koolhaas, and it shows that his immense talents are not limited to just exterior architecture. This escalator redesign is part of the $250 million that Saks spent on their recent renovations and I have to say that it's money well spent. Brick & mortar retail has seen a decline in recent years and it's in a brand's best interest to make that in-person shopping experience as impactful as possible. This installation is by far the best use of dichroic glass we at Paris Forino have seen.

A dichroic glass side table pops in the entry foyer of this Paris Forin-designed Hamptons home

At our firm we've been able to include touches of dichroic glass into several of our projects. For a current project in the Hamptons we've decided to deliberately contrast the classic East Coast, traditional interiors with modern furnishings to create a chic, transitional aesthetic. In the picture at left we particularly enjoy the juxtaposition of the dichroic glass side table with the bold wallpaper print and the ornate stairwell banister.

Much further down the East Coast, we've been busy designing all the interiors for the Missoni Baia residential tower in Miami, Florida. It's the iconic Italian fashion house's first foray into luxury real estate and in addition to the fantastic selection of Missoni fabrics and prints at our disposal, we've been able to include some beautiful unexpected materials and finishes. One of those being dichroic glass for the custom reception desk at the Missoni Baia sales center. It's one of the first design components that welcome guests and potential unit-buyers upon visiting the space and we think it definitely leaves a lasting impression.

Missoni Baia's front lobby featuring a dichroic glass custom desk. Below are additional images of the stunning dichroic escalators at Saks Fifth Avenue.

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