Landini Associates

Landini Associates

Surry Hills, AU


Japanese Grocer Reinvented by Landini Associates, a “Warm Welcome"

By ccsullivan
Jan 3, '22 11:31 AM EST
Felna Sawatari in Takahama, Aichi Prefecture, Japan. Design by Landini Associates, photo by Ippei Shinzawa
Felna Sawatari in Takahama, Aichi Prefecture, Japan. Design by Landini Associates, photo by Ippei Shinzawa

The Japanese mega-retailer Felna has engaged Landini Associates to partner in the complete reinvention of its grocery store format. The first location, Felna Sawatari, has just opened, showing how the new design reaccentuates its product offering while enhancing its reputation for a warm customer welcome. The collaboration began in September 2020 and debuts this month.

In addition to the interior and graphic environment it also delivers an evolved trading identity and external store branding solution. The redesign will be rolled out across Japan during the coming years.

“More market than supermarket,” the new design energizes the retail environment, with Landini Associates delivering a modern yet honest appearance whilst emphasizing Felna’s fresh and refined offerings. The firm designed almost everything visible, including the identity evolution, master planning, interiors and all in-store graphic communications, from signage to ticketing to a new system of icons.

About the New Felna

The calming backdrop of warm timbers and monochromatic finishes, also seen outside through larger glass openings, showcase the welcoming environment. Functional yet elegant new fixtures and lighting systems elevate the carefully curated product offerings, while iconography and a dual-language wayfinding system activate shopper interest using a palette of natural hues in line with the Felna brand.

Soft, modern, iconic and impeccably honest, the new Felna design format captures an appreciative and egalitarian shopper by creating a welcome brand experience that simply gets out of the way of the high-quality product.

Another achievement of the sustainable redesign is to support Felna’s goal of increasing purchases of prepared and semi-prepared foods in the deli and ready-to-eat categories, as well as its Osazai meals, which include hot and cold tapas-style offerings. Felna and Landini Associates also seize on clever ways to help customers shop “more easily and more frequently,” suiting the lifestyles and desires of their growing shopper demographics.

Virtual Delivery

An interesting tidbit: Landini Associates and Felna accomplished all of this virtually, without the designers ever visiting the client or site in Japan. 

"Covid saw to that,” says Mark Landini. "While working remotely is by no means new at Landini Associates — 85% of our studio’s work is overseas, yet all of our designs are done from Sydney — we do normally travel to project locations and spend time face-to-face with our clients. So along with a global pandemic, this was certainly a new experience, and we could not be more delighted with the results. “

Adds Ben Goss, design director for graphicswith Landini Associates, “We’ve accentuated our design with instantly recognizable food icons, the best possible lighting, and a natural, comfortable presentation with prime visibility for Felna’s hero departments. Internal wayfinding and customer navigation eases the shopping process, with new department signage and directories creating an atmosphere of comfort, curated selections, and wide-open visibility to abundant freshness.”

Photography by Ippei Shinzawa
High-res images available here:

Felna Sawatari
Aichi Prefecture, Japan