Gisbert Pöppler creates own office and showroom inside former Berlin bookshop

An old bookshop in Berlin is now home to the studio of architecture and interior design practice Gisbert Pöppler, which incorporates the building’s grand arched doorways and other original features.

The office is situated on Karl Marx Allee, a major boulevard lined with buildings designed in the socialist classicism architectural style of the 1950s.

Staff desks in the Gisbert Pöppler office sit near the building’s entrance

Gisbert Pöppler’s workspace had previously been located in Berlin’s Kreuzberg neighbourhood, set above a row of nightclubs.

“We had an amazing view of the city up there and enjoyed being in the midst of it all,” the practice told Dezeen.

Gisbert Pöppler office and showroom on Karl Marx Allee in Berlin
Archways offer views of the showroom at the building’s rear

“We outgrew our space though and coincidently our landlords decided to completely renovate and add-on to the building, so we would have had to leave for a while anyway,” the studio added. “This was when we discovered that the former bookstore was available.”

The bookstore had been left in a “depressing” state.

But as soon as the Gisbert Pöppler team moved in, they sought to find ways to transform it into an efficient office and show space for their range of furnishings and textiles, all while preserving the site’s original features like its arched doorways and terrazzo flooring.

Gisbert Pöppler office and showroom on Karl Marx Allee in Berlin
Furnishings are displayed on carpeted platforms

A formal work area with desks and computers has been created directly beside the office’s entrance, allowing staff to greet and interact with visitors as they walk in.

Shelving here that originally stored books now holds material samples, image mood boards and other project-related paraphernalia.

Meetings can be held in the next room along, which is centred by Gisbert Pöppler’s reflective aluminium Cherry table.

Gisbert Pöppler office and showroom on Karl Marx Allee in Berlin
The office’s literature corner has been painted bright pink

Then follows the showroom, where pieces are displayed on purple carpeted platforms that the practice created in collaboration with Swiss rug makers Rückstuhl.

“Preservation regulations were intense for this place, so our solutions are somewhat unconventional,” the practice said. “We built platforms to define spaces and solve technical situations without harming the building’s fabric.”

Gisbert Pöppler office and showroom on Karl Marx Allee in Berlin
Hanging utensils decorate the office’s kitchen

Two further spaces branch off from here: a conference area for larger staff gatherings, and a “literature corner” filled with inspirational reading material.

Unlike the rest of the office, which is painted an icy-blue shade, this corner has been completed in a vivid pink hue to offset the lack of natural light in this area.

Gisbert Pöppler office and showroom on Karl Marx Allee in Berlin
A dresser in the kitchen contains porcelain handed down from Pöppler’s grandmother

Additionally, there’s a kitchen on-site where staff can prepare and eat their meals at lunchtime, featuring simple white cabinetry and hanging utensils.

To one side of the room stands an ornate dresser, restored by Gisbert Pöppler’s eponymous founder as a young man. Inside, the cabinet is filled with an array of Meissen porcelain tableware collected by his grandmother.

There’s also a basement where the practice keeps more materials and client orders before they’re shipped out.

Gisbert Pöppler office and showroom on Karl Marx Allee in Berlin
More materials and furnishings are stored in the office’s basement

Gisbert Pöppler has worked on a number of residential projects around Berlin.

One such example is an apartment in the city’s Mitte borough, designed to be like a “tailor-made suit” with one-off furnishings and bespoke fixtures that suit the owner’s particular needs.

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