05 Oct New concept stores opening in London
Discover the three new retail news that caught our attention this month.
Habitat flagship – first one in 10 years
Design furniture store opened its first new flagship showroom in a decade last month in Westfield London new home department. It will be followed by a second opening in Brighton in November, that will run across two floors with 6,500 sq ft of retailing space.
The first will cover 4,700 sq ft and offer 1,400 Habitat products across all its usual categories. The showroom will be part of Westfield’s £600m expansion. The new Home department will bring a number of furniture and home brands together to create a ‘Home’ hub for the convenience of customers.
The new showrooms complement Habitat multi-channel strategy. They are added to the existing website, a 2,000 sq ft Mini store in Leeds and 11 Mini Habitats in Sainsbury’s supermarkets. The retailer focused on delivering its products through all possible channels as customers increasingly want the choice of going in stores or online. Shoppers also look for convenience and being able to find several retailers in one location.
Habitat’s owner Sainsbury’s says it is investing £1.5m in the brand’s first standalone stores in 10 years.
Debenhams’ “Beauty Hall of the future”
Department store Debenhams has opened its new 86,000 sq ft store in Intu Watford last week, displaying the UK’s first redesigned beauty hall. The “Beauty Hall of the future” concept is an interactive space that runs across 15% of the store space. It features a Hair Lab, a Minibar for travel-size products,… Shoppers can receive manicures, skin and brow treatments, as well as makeovers.
Elements of the new-look beauty offer will be installed in around 40 stores before Christmas.
This new concept is part of Debenhams strategy to better respond to customers’ shopping habits. They want to shop while having many food options and a large choice of beauty treatments. That’s why retailers increasingly open stores or showrooms in malls. They are becoming leisure destinations where customers enjoy shopping with friends and family and where brands need to have a physical presence.
IKEA’s “advice centre” mini shop
IKEA will open a new kind of mini store, mixing its real products with its augmented reality app “IKEA Place”. The store won’t display as many products as it used to, although its objective is to serve as a workshop area to help design and bring to customers’ projects life. It will specialise in low-ticket kitchen and wardrobes and will combine traditional and digitalised features. Trained in-store staff will give shoppers personalised and tailored advice. They will also accompany shoppers to use the Place app to visualise products in their home.
To adapt to fast-changing retail, IKEA is changing the way people shop over time. First, IKEA stores always have been out-of-town warehouse locations where customers spent the entire day. Then, an Order and Collection point opened in Westfield Stratford mid 2016. Now this store is part of its new inner-city expansion strategy.
The retailer is constantly evolving and innovating to better meet the needs of its customers. This central and smaller shop aim to be more accessible and bring IKEA to more people. Indeed, shoppers will be able to pop-in to the store more often thanks to its central location.
Shop will open its doors in Autumn in Tottenham Court Road. London will be the first city globally to host this new format.