The starting point for architectural design is committed to the triple bottom line concept, which asserts that long-term and sustainable progress requires the balanced achievement of economic development, environmental performance, and social advancement.

Rethinking The Future Awards 2020
Second Award | Cultural (Built)

Studio Name: KAAF I Kitriniaris Associates Architecture Firm
Lead Architect: Alexandros Kitriniaris
Design Team: Dominiki Katramadopoulou, Aggeliki Zavraka, Christiana Alifanti
Area: 240sqm
Year: 2019
Location: Agios Nikolaos, Crete, Greece
Museological Design: Popi Georgopoulou
Digital Production: Realiscape Typorama
Lighting Design: Luce Ataliotis
Branding: Soul Design
Photography Credits: Simone Bossi

BIOAROMA - MUSEUM & EXPERIENCE STORE | KAAF I Kitriniaris Associates Architecture Firm - Sheet1
©Simone Bossi

In keeping with this philosophy, Bioaroma is a vertically integrated manufacturing unit that follows strategies for viable development in terms of the production, processing, and standardization of its products, and with regard to their distribution to market, as the plastic wrapping is made from sugar cane from responsibly managed plantations, and the packaging from recycled paper. The final product reaching the international market is 100% natural, without added water, and part of their production is exhibited at Bioaroma’s museum of perfumes and natural cosmetics, and in their 240sqm experience store.

BIOAROMA - MUSEUM & EXPERIENCE STORE | KAAF I Kitriniaris Associates Architecture Firm - Sheet2
©Simone Bossi


The architectural design aims to highlight and promote the civilization and history of Crete in relation to natural cosmetics, essential oils, and herbs, simultaneously integrating local traditional handicraft with modern industrial manufacturing methods. To reflect the former, local, natural, rough-hewn stone was used for the museum background along with natural oak plywood for the store furnishings. To reflect the latter, metal sheets were used for the double revolving entrance doors, the museum’s showcases, the shelter and ceiling of the store, and plexiglass for the museum exhibition panels.

BIOAROMA - MUSEUM & EXPERIENCE STORE | KAAF I Kitriniaris Associates Architecture Firm - Sheet4
©Simone Bossi


The placement of the store in the layout’s center of gravity has a dual significance. Firstly it is in direct contact with the entrance so as not to hinder scheduled tours or workshops in the museum; secondly, it is directly visible to the peripheral museum traffic, so as to form a point of reference for the visitor, both in terms of the history of perfume and cosmetics and in relation to the exhibition and promotion of the firm’s products. Further special functionality has been integrated throughout the museum, such as the dedicated narration space where visitors can hear the history of perfume and cosmetics from a digital hologram (https://youtu.be/s82C3-mlnQ8); specially designed boudoir furnishings with washbasins and mirrors for sampling perfume; the atelier for creating a personalized perfume; the workshop for producing perfumes and cosmetics; the cabin for pre-sale product production; and the connectivity of the experience through a special photobooth to photograph and share the experience on social media.

BIOAROMA - MUSEUM & EXPERIENCE STORE | KAAF I Kitriniaris Associates Architecture Firm - Sheet5
©Simone Bossi


Ladanum (the wild rockrose), the resin of cistus creticus, was the most important natural product of Crete. It is the plant with the highest content of polyphenols in Europe. It was used in incense, therapeutic ointments and as a red color of perfumes. Dittany was the sacred plant of Artemis Diktynna, kept on Dikti mount. She used it in the production of medicinal healing pulses and aromatic wines (diktat wine). Cretan land is a botanical paradise. It is one of the richest ecosystems in Europe. Appropriate climatic conditions and soil quality consist of the ideal environment for many medicinal and aromatic plants. The use of herbs in diet, healing, and grooming played an important role in traditional societies.


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