Discover the Magic – Discovery Channel Store, Washington, D.C.


May 1998

Discover the Magic

Themed shopping and museum exhibitions converge in the Discovery Channel’s recently opened flagship store. Destination D.C., as the outlet in the nation’s capital is’ called, “treats products with the same sort of reverence and explanatory text you’d find in a hands-on interactive museum,” Greg Moyer, the network’s president and chief creative officer, explains. The store achieves this fusion with dinosaur skeletons and other relics, including a B-25 fuselage, as well as interactive kiosks commis­sioned from New York- based digital design firm RG/A Interactive, where visitors can play at being archaeologists and learn to operate the telescopes for sale.

Designed by Ron Pompei, who also worked on the Viacom store in Chicago and is responsible for Urban Outfitters’ industrial look, the three-story store even has a “cosmology,” as Pompei and Moyer call each floor’s different theme. Increasing the store’s theme park like­ness, visitors ascend in an egg-shaped elevator with choreographed lighting and sound that changes to con­form to each floor’s motif. Indeed, according to Pompei, “the space is a cross between architecture, sculpture and media— the whole body is involved.”

– Eugenia Bell

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Discover the Magic – Discovery Channel Store, Washington, D.C.