Finnies the Jeweller

2023 | Client Finnies the Jeweller

Finnies the Jeweller, a long-established independent retailer in Aberdeen’s city centre, has been extended and refurbished as part of the business’s ambitious development plans.

Following the acquisition of a neighbouring property, structural works and alterations to the layout have nearly doubled the size of the showroom’s footprint. 

A high-spec internal fit-out featuring bespoke joinery and state-of-the-art lighting has also upgraded the look and feel of the internal space, creating an ideal blend of the traditional and modern in which to showcase the jeweller’s portfolio.

As part of the project, the existing rear extension was demolished. Two new openings between the existing and adjacent properties were also created to facilitate the showroom’s increased size. 

To accommodate the change in load path from the upper floors of the historic adjacent buildings, basement strengthening works were carried out, including new piled foundations.

Multidisciplinary role

Following a competitive tender process, we were appointed to provide project management, contract administration, quantity surveying and principal designer services, from the conceptual design stage through to the completion of works on site. We also provided advice on capital allowance claims.

Our team helped to refine the client’s brief, coordinated the design throughout and provided costing advice. We then helped to prepare tender documentation and undertook a negotiated tender and appointment process with the contractor. 

Subsequently, we monitored and reported on progress, keeping the client fully informed on the impact of potential changes.

As principal designer we managed the health and safety aspects of the project during the pre-construction phase – later, during the construction phase, we attended site regularly to monitor and advise.

During the construction phase.
We worked closely with Thomson Gray when undertaking our recent expansion project in Aberdeen and would have no hesitation in recommending their services to anyone.
William Blake
Finnies the Jeweller

Bespoke joinery

The bespoke joinery and display cabinets, designed and built to specific product, client and brand requirements, were a contractor design portion (CDP), which required coordination with the architect and wider project stakeholders to ensure these aligned with the overall fit-out works.

A number of prototypes were also prepared for the client to review before agreeing a final design for full manufacture and production.

Interior view at Finnie's jewellery retail store in Aberdeen. In the foreground two green velvet bar chairs sit beside a counter with glass cabinet, ready for a consultation. Cabinets are dark wood with a glass display area on top. In the background the showroom recedes with further cabinets and display cases. Posters for luxury watches are just out of focus in the back of the shop.
The advice and council provided were invaluable and a key component in delivering an exceptional luxury retail environment that our entire team is extremely proud of.
William Blake
Finnies the Jeweller

Stakeholder engagement and coordination

A key requirement was that Finnies should remain open for business during the project, with minimal impact on trading and the customer experience. 

Coupled with restricted access to this busy city-centre site, this necessitated careful planning and coordination of works as well as regular engagement with stakeholders, including Aberdeen City Council and the owners of properties nearby. 

When necessary, we agreed road closures as well as out-of-hours and nightshift work to minimise the disruption to all concerned.

Award-winning result

The finished project won Best New Store or Refurbishment of the Year at the Professional Jeweller Awards 2023, ahead of shortlisted stores across the UK. 

The refurbished store was also the regional winner (for Scotland and Ireland) in the Retail Jeweller’s Inspiring Independents 2023 awards.


Architect MGA Architecture
SJS Property Service Ltd
Services Engineer
David Low Consulting
Structural Engineer
Project Manager
Thomson Gray
Principal Designer
Thomson Gray
Quantity Surveyor
Thomson Gray
Capital Allowances
Thomson Gray


2024 ASA Design Awards: Best Interior
2023 Professional Jeweller Awards: Best New Store or Refurbishment
 Retail Jewellers Inspiring Independents: Regional Winner