The Best New Retail in Asia – January 2024
Luxury is increasingly prized in Asia, with many high-end brands launching retail spaces across the continent.
This month sees the trend continue as a number of well-known luxury brands open new stores with a variety of concepts. Localisation is reflected in the design of spaces and the communities they are appealing to. Brands recognise that customers want their items to be unique and bespoke to them, and therefore personalisation options also make an appearance across a number of stores.
Mixed-use retail spaces are another element we are continuing to see, as cafes, galleries and clubs are included in-store.
Ready to feel inspired? Read on for the best of retail in Asia this month.
Harrods, The Residence, Shanghai
Luxury British retailer Harrods has gone all in on a new retail concept in China.
It has launched a private members club called The Residence, the first of its kind for the company. The space has been carefully designed and evokes both a baroque and art deco feel, with specially selected artwork and furnishings.
The club is highly exclusive, accepting only 250 members initially, with applications being made via WeChat. There are three tiers of membership starting from 150,000 RMB.
It will boast Shanghai’s first Gordon Ramsey restaurant, along with a selection of rare drinks. Members will also be able to attend a range of events such as masterclasses, food and drink tasting sessions and networking. They’ll even have the option of using Harrods’ own private jets.
Cognac brand Hennessy is tapping into Chinese interest in all things high-end with its first flagship.
The store is very sleek and sophisticated, with curved pillars, furniture and shelving guiding you round the space. Products and accessories from all Hennessy ranges, such as Hennessy X.O and Hennessy Paradis are available throughout the store. Personalisation is also available for bottles and packaging.
The centre of the space contains the Master Blender Table, which functions as brand heritage storytelling, where visitors can find out about previous Hennessy Master Blenders and the cognacs they have cultivated. The brand plans to hold exhibitions and tasting sessions in future.
Nike Ginza, Tokyo
Nike is continuing with its Nike Rise concept, launching a new store in Japan.
The store primarily serves Tokyo’s running community, particularly fans of relay running. Nike aims to build connections between these runners and facilitate socialising and training with the Nike Run Club (NRC).
The space includes a Running Hub where a number of events and NRC sessions will be hosted. Digital screens throughout provide information on NRC sessions and local running routes, and there are lockers available to store items. Runners can also try out footwear and receive recommendations from athletic experts.
A large flagship store with a very unique design has been launched by electronics giant Huawei.
The store takes inspiration from nature with a sprouting seed design on the outside and tree trunk-like round columns on the inside, giving a sleek appearance. Digital displays provide information about the store, such as navigation, lighting and air conditioning.
The space is further segmented into a vast range of zones, covering Huawei’s offerings in a number of areas. There is a zone designed to resemble a smart home, an area for health products, and of course, entertainment. Customers can even bring their pets with them, as the store includes a special room for them.
A flagship showroom, the first of its kind in South Korea, has been launched by Lotus, the luxury car brand.
Situated amongst luxury stores and fashion brands, Lotus hopes to appeal to a growing appetite for luxury products. Visitors to the showroom can browse its range of vehicles across three floors, including new sports cars and hyper SUVs, along with branded merchandise.
To appeal to its high-end clients, the space has a VIP lounge and digital tools to help customers choose and create bespoke options for their cars.
Outdoor brand Descente has launched a permanent space in the Xintiandi district with a pop-up outside.
The design of the store takes inspiration from local housing as well as the brand’s concept Descente Blanc, a minimalist design to allow the products to take centre stage. Customers can purchase ski and other outdoor products, and also repair and refresh items at D-Mover’s Care Center.
The pop-up outside the store resembles an ice cube with special art installations and projections inside, where shoppers can also buy a curated selection of Descente items.
Swarovski launched a sparkling new store in South Korea, its first flagship in the country.
The store has a large Swarovski logo on the outside, and jewellery and homeware products spread across four floors. The decor uses the brand’s signature colours throughout. Launching for the first time in Seoul is the Galaxy Collection, which uses diamonds developed in a lab and recycled gold.
The brand has also brought in Shourouk Rhaiem, a designer from France, as the first to exhibit in its new gallery space. The exhibition is called Ordinary Life and is a collection of art pieces depicting everyday items, decorated with Swarovski crystals. Other artists will be invited to the gallery space to use Swarovski crystals in their work. Customers can also visit Café Swarovski and have tea and drinks on Swarovski crystal tableware.
There’s too much information out there for any business to stay on top of. An Insider Trends report will help you make sense of the trends that matter to your business and what’s really going on behind them.