Amber Developments – From a blank canvas to Galeria Blanca
Galeria Blanca is the sleek new Ibiza art gallery and event space on Ibiza town’s grand Vara de Rey. Unveiled earlier this summer, the space was transformed from a fashion boutique into a beautifully modern work of art in its own right within just three weeks, by Ibiza’s leading design and project management company, Amber Developments.
The gallery is part of the ever-expanding Whitewall Galleries group, who own a number of stand-alone galleries in London, in addition to smaller concessions within John Lewis department stores. The team, lead by founder and director of Amber Developments, Gray Gillot, were introduced to Galeria Blanca director, Greg Beswick. Greg was searching for a company to manage a complete design and refurbishment package within a very tight time frame – Amber Developments’ specialty – making them the perfect partner.
For Gray and his team, the key to making this project a success was to integrate the Whitewall Galleries brand into the Ibiza aesthetic and lifestyle, combining the heritage of the old town with Whitewall Galleries corporate identity and making the space appealing to holidaymakers, art collectors and Ibiza residents alike. “A new space always has to fit the environment,” explains Gray. “It was a careful balancing act, introducing enough elements from the Whitehall Galleries image so Galeria Blanca was corporate, whilst having a definitive Ibiza look and feel.”
As with all Amber Development projects, the process was efficient and streamlined, with the initial briefing, research, proposal and project going to tender within four weeks. As any resident will know, a mere mortal could have been caught up in a spider web of red tape, bureaucracy and Ibiza town council paperwork for months, but the Amber Developments signature persistence and no-nonsense approach meant the plans were pushed through at lightning speed.
Amber Developments were responsible for the design, project management, finance, and review of the project and hired two contractors to complete the works. Ibiza Renovations produced the internal building elements, electrical and plumbing services, while SIC looked after the internal shop fitting and bespoke displays. “It was great going back to my roots,” says Gray of the unique challenge. “I worked in design and project management in the UK commercial sector for 20 years. The project was a fantastic opportunity to combine this expertise, with my six years of experience of working with contractors in Ibiza and combining the style and feel of a UK brand with Ibiza.”
The gallery itself is a beautiful fusion of the old and new, blending Ibicenco style elements such as white walls and a simple tiled floor, with the modernity of White Galleries’ strong clean lines, good lighting and simple furnishings. The high ceilings create a feeling of space, and soft light floods in to illuminate the neatly presented canvases and the centre piece is stunning futuristic reception desk. Age, texture and design create a perfect synergy – ceramic tiled floors, are brought up to date with stylish clear moulded chairs, strong lines and sharp corners are melted by the perfect circular desk, and small spotlights contrast with soft uplighting.
Galeria Blanca proudly opened its doors on May 1, 2015 with a star-studded soiree and a fabulous roster of exhibitions lined up for the summer season. All the design elements work in harmony to create a feeling of calm, tranquillity and space – the perfect framework for a gallery and yet another shining example of the professionalism, creativity and expertise of Amber Developments.