Seoul. David Chipperfield Architects completes Amorepacific headquarters

The building of the largest Korean beauty company combines a diaphanous brise-soleil with a carved volume that opens up to the city.

David Chipperfield Architects, Amorepacific Headquarters, Seoul, Korea, 2018. © David Chipperfield Architects

David Chipperfield Architects completed the Amorepacific headquarters, Korea’s largest beauty company in the centre of Seoul. The project has been guided by the company’s will to engage with the city: Amorepacific headquarters can be therefore defined as a gradient of spaces spanning from a large atrium at the ground floor – conceived as a catalyst for cultural activities open to the city – and ending with the spaces for the company’s activities at the upper floors. As DCA states: “Buildings of this scale have a public responsibility that needs to be addressed by offering a public destination beyond formal appearance.”

The site has been occupied by the company since 1956 and is located in the Yongsan district, close to a park and a business district. The area, formerly a US military zone, is currently the largest high-rise development in Korea. The building weaves a complex program in its 216.000 sqm, distributed in 23 floors. The public facilities at the lowest floors include large atrium and exhibition space, an auditorium, a conference centre, a library, a retail area, restaurants area as well as the Amorepacific Museum of Art. At the upper floors, the offices of the company are flanked a day-care centre and a company history space and staff facilities such as gastronomy and fitness areas. The compact volume of Amorepacific headquarters is excavated by a central courtyard, three urban-scale openings and hanging gardens offered to the company’s staff as recreational spaces; this arrangement is effective in optimising daylight and natural ventilation.

© David Chipperfield Architects
Axonometry © David Chipperfield Architects

The facade of the building is a lightweight envelope, as a diaphanous textile curtain made of matt-white aluminium fins of different sizes working as a shading device. David Chipperfield Architects designed four different solutions for the arrangement of the fins, that are placed on the facade according to solar exposure. Behind this layer, a thermal skin of fixed glazing and opaque ventilation panels is placed to improve thermal comfort. The external surface is elevated above the entrance level as a sign of the openness towards the city.

Amorepacific Headquarters
mixed use
David Chipperfield Architects
Project architect:
Hans Krause with Nicolas Kulemeyer and Thomas Pyschny
Isabel Albano-Müller, Wolfgang Baumeister, Wolfram Belz, Cyrell Boehm, Viktor Braun, Ronan Burke, Christian Busch, Rodrigo Carrasquer, Sophia Deckel, Caterina Decker, Paul Eckert, Rebecca Egan, Carlo Fischer, Alberto Franco Flores, Franziska Friebel, Nico Gaar, Rafael Heine, Anne Hengst, Matthias Heskamp, Wilhelmina Hoffmann, Frank Jödicke, Kristin Karig, Anke Lawrence, Ho Sun Lee, Pascal Maas, Franziska Michalsky, Lorand Mittay, Sandra Morar, Carthage Murphy, Felix Müller-Hartburg, Eve Neumann, Miguel Ortigão, Nicolas Pabion, Diogo Passarinho, Alexandre Pavlidis, Mariana Peralta, Lena Peters, Rosa Piepoli, Ilona Priwitzer, Maximilian Pudenz, Thorsten Rothmann, Susie Ryu, Josh Saunders, Noriyuki Sawaya, Diana Schaffrannek, Gunda Schulz, Marlitt Schwarzer, Lijun Shen, Vincent Sijssens, Caroline Stahl, Iason Tsironis, Jene Van Den Abeele, Gordan Vitevski, Marc Warrington, Max Werner, Robert Westphal, Malte Wilms, Kyung Ho Won
Executive Architects:
HAEAHN Architecture, Seoul (Shell & Core, Schematic design – Construction documents); KESSON, Seoul (Interiors)
Site supervision:
Kunwon Engineering Co. Ltd., Seoul
Arup Deutschland GmbH, Berlin & Arup Ltd., London
L2M3 communication design, Stuttgart
Landscape architect:
SeoAhn, Seoul
216,000 sqm

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