“Taiyo” – the sun shines on Savignyplatz

“Taiyo” – the sun shines on Savignyplatz

The initial creative idea was to bring Japanese furnishings and household items to Berlin. Today, the owners of the business, Linges and Jürgen Heinze, combine Asian and European home décor with the tag line: natural materials, high-quality workmanship.

“Taiyo” is Japanese for sun. After hearing the word once, Jürgen never forgot it. When he and his wife started the business in Berlin-Steglitz in 1986, it was a fitting name for their shop, with its Japanese sliding doors, fabrics and porcelain. “The interest was certainly out there, but nonetheless Japan was lacking in Berlin. It was just a feeling. I don’t know why, but my husband has a good instinct for it. He has a creative mind, he’s the one with all the ideas. I’m the one who makes sure that those ideas are implemented.” says Linges.

Whilst she took care of the shop and the family, as well as working as a court interpreter, he travelled to Japan. Korea, Indonesia, Burma and Vietnam were to follow, and products whose simple style fitted in with the Japanese design were added to the range. Their central focus was always the following: personal contact, direct cooperation with family businesses or small workshops, and the purchasing of products directly, not through intermediaries. Some of the contacts which came out of the first trip to Japan continue today and have developed into friendships.

In 1999 the couple relocated the shop to number 6 Savignyplatz; where Grolmannstraße meets Knesebeckstraße. It was there where, back in the seventies, everything began: in a clothing store, Linges met her husband-to-be. He was a manager and she had a part-time job there alongside her studies as a shop assistant. “When the owner of the shop was leaving the premises,” she explains, “he asked us whether we would like to take it over. For us there was no question about it: that would be our new shop.”

Japan stands for refined artistic and human culture, a principle which the Heinzes follow when selecting objects from all corners of the world. The customers, as Jürgen says, come “not just from West Berlin”, but from all over Germany.

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TAIYO Berlin


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