Cleveland, OH - The NBA Cleveland Cavaliers have officially opened the doors to a bright new modern and inviting two-story team shop inside Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Now called "Center Court," the store has been completely transformed into an elevated and distinctive retail space that embodies the Cavaliers' reinvigorated and modernized brand identity.
Designed in close collaboration with Snarkitecture, the international design practice of Cavaliers Creative Director, Daniel Arsham - Center Court is a reimagined twist on the traditional team shop.The 6,700 square foot space pulls in inspiration from "behind-the-scenes" areas of the FieldHouse with a balanced, pure and contemporary aesthetic akin to Arsham's renowned artistic style. With careful consideration for lighting and presentation, the look and feel of the store creates an environment that transforms the wide assortment of merchandise into works of art.
"Our goal was to create a team shop that complements what Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse is today as a modernized, world-class attraction," said Nic Barlage, Cavaliers, Rock Entertainment Group and Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse CEO. "Much thought and inspiration went into creating not only a shopping experience, but a destination that goes beyond simply retail and activates our brand in a compelling and authentic way. We are proud of the outcome and thrilled to open the doors to Center Court for our fans to shop and enjoy."
An unexpected activation inside Center Court is a signature Snarkitecture kinetic sculpture suspended from the second-floor ceiling through the center of the shop. Sure to be a fan favorite, the "basketball run” is a two-story tall art piece inspired by a children's marble run toy scaled up to accommodate 15 custom white full-size basketballs.
"One of our goals with Snarkitecture is to reimagine the familiar, and in our collaboration with the Cleveland Cavaliers, we've been able to create an inviting and elevated retail space,” said Alex Mustonen, partner and co-founder of Snarkitecture. “Our goal was to create a retail destination within Cleveland that draws on the experience and excitement of attending a Cavs game. Front and center within the space is a custom, sculptural Snarkitecture installation - a double height basketball run that creates a playful moment of engagement and wonder within an active retail environment."
On the exterior of the FieldHouse, the entrance from E. 6th St. near Gateway Plaza in downtown Cleveland has been reconstructed to allow more natural light into the shop. The second-floor façade has also been extended, bringing additional square footage to the upper level. This gives way to an entirely new wing dedicated solely to merchandise for the AHL Cleveland Monsters, who also call the FieldHouse home. The space brings fans onto the rink with wall displays inspired by hockey boards and a blue resin floor meant to mimic the glistening of ice.
Additional key features include:
- Center Court will feature the widest selection of Cavs gear and will be home to product lines unavailable anywhere else. The first level has an expansive array of Cavs apparel, from hats to hoodies, memorabilia, trinkets and everything in between. This includes gear from names like Nike, Lululemon, Peter Millar and many other top brands.
- Designed by Arsham Studio, Center Court signage is inspired by vintage LED scoreboards, where the letters are composed of individually illuminated dots. The concourse entrance features a scrolling LED banner with the same retro sensibility.
- The first level also includes an area dedicated to official team replica Nike player jerseys designed to resemble that of a locker room. The store entrance from the main concourse is inspired by the dark vomitory passageways that lead to the playing surface in the depths of the FieldHouse bowl.
- Featuring walls lined with fluted wood panels, the first level also has a side room dedicated to retro Cavs gear. The area has a nostalgic warmth that counters the otherwise tonally cool environment of the full space.
- The stairs leading to the second floor are inspired by tall theatrical curtains commonly used as backdrops and drapery on stages, a nod to the rich concert and entertainment history of the FieldHouse.
- In addition to the new Monsters merchandise wing, the second level has an extensive collection of women's and youth apparel, including a full assortment of jerseys.
Center Court is the physical embodiment of the Cavaliers innovative retail strategy that has fueled 57% year-over-year retail growth. With a deep understanding of the purchasing behaviors across demographic cohorts, the team has used fan insights to help drive franchise record retail sales this season, even while Center Court was under construction. Through a regular cadence of retail collaborations with the likes of Authmade, Concrete Flowers, Standard Issue and many other recognizable names, an ever-changing product assortment has proven to be popular with fans.
Available exclusively at Center Court is the "Cavs x UNDN LAQR" nail polish line of superstar and Cleveland native, Machine Gun Kelly. The collection is creatively packaged in a Cavs-inspired box set and features 216 (matte black), Larry O (gold) and Let Em Know (burgundy wine) nail polish colors. This is the first of many exclusive upcoming product launches to be featured at Center Court.
A portion of the proceeds from all sales in the month of May will go to NF Forward in memory of Nick Gilbert, son of Cavs Chairman Dan Gilbert, who passed away earlier this week from complications related to Neurofibromatosis 1 (NF 1). NF Forward is a nonprofit 501c3 organization that funds groundbreaking, cutting-edge research and strives to raise awareness about NF among a wide range of individuals.