The Best New Retail in China – April 2024

China is fast becoming one of the buzziest places for shopping and retail, with companies all over the world opening large stores across the country.

The stores we have found this month are expansive and designed to provide customers with a unique shopping experience. Stores are making use of large sculptures, local artists, photography, and giant display screens. Some stores are including traditional Chinese elements, and others are bringing the outdoors indoors.

Take a look at the best new stores doing exciting retail in China.


Image credit: Supreme

Supreme, Shanghai

Skate store Supreme has launched its first store in China – its largest in the world.

The store is a large blank space, allowing the products and the artwork to stand out. The brand hired Josh Smith to create a special mural, Kaws to paint over advertising posters from its archives, and a Formula 1 car sculpture by Mark Gonzales.

There is also a large indoor skating bowl that functions as a decorative piece due to the way it has been sculpted. Customers can relax on a bench created from a cut up trunk, part of a former collaboration with Louis Vuitton. To attend the store opening, customers had to win a space via entry on WeChat, which also included exclusive product items.


Arc’teryx, Shanghai

Outdoor clothing brand Arc’teryx has launched a new concept store in West Nanjing Road.

The space is designed to resemble a museum and is inspired by the brand’s origins in Canada. Four zoned areas explore different elements, such as terrains and landscapes. There is a space for engaging with media and content and one for repairing and refreshing clothing and other items. The stairs have been turned into an experiential experience, to feel like a hilly hike.

The launch of the store was preceded by a screening of the Arc’teryx documentary “Searching for the Christmas Tree”, which is centred on the hunt for a Christmas tree-shaped cliff in the Taihang mountains.


Image credit: Nike

World of Flight, Beijing

Nike’s retail concept, World of Flight, is focused on the Jordan brand, and designed to stand out from other retail stores in the area.

The large building is an illuminated oblong with silver walls and a sleek and modern look. The interior incorporates a range of influences, including the Beijing Brick, originally used in the Forbidden City. Local artists were commissioned to create special artwork for the store, such as backdrops, which are displayed throughout. The store also features a celebration of Michael Jordan and the Jordan brand, with a heritage wall of photography and a space with memorabilia from his career.

Customers can shop from a range of Jordan products, including footwear and clothing. Additionally, they can purchase limited edition items, such as t-shirts from the Jordan Local Artist series, created in partnership with street artists from China. 

Personalisation and customisation is also an option, with embossing, engraving and patching available. A special lounge on the top floor will host exclusive events and provide a space for basketball enthusiasts to gather.


Xianyu Recycle Shop, Hangzhou

Xianyu, the second hand e-commerce site from media and retail group Alibaba, has launched its first physical space.

Customers are able to bring their items in to be sold, and then browse items on sale from other customers. The product categories will mirror those used in the online app, with clothing, toys and books. However, customers will also be able to offer services for sale, such as dog walking.

The Xianyu app has been particularly popular with Gen Z, who have greater concerns about sustainability and more interest in buying second-hand.


Image credit: Apple

Apple, Shanghai

Apple Jing’an is the latest store in China from the tech company.

The store is located next to the historic Jing’an Temple and the design of the space is designed to fit with the traditional while retaining a sleek modern look. The interior is built in a circle shape, with the store’s fixtures and fittings arranged around a glass skylight with large silver columns.

Customers can explore corridors and browse tables that display the latest Apple products, including the iPhone 15 and sustainable Apple Watch. 

The store has several special areas for different Apple services. A curved seating area offers a space for Today at Apple sessions, while The Forum has a large display screen for showcasing tutorials and other videos. Businesses can get advice from a team dedicated to business in a private area called The Boardroom.


IKEA, Shanghai

IKEA launched this new pop-up store in China with an April Fool’s twist.

The store created a video suggesting a boutique may open in the area, but instead the store launched a pop-up with affordable products. The retailer is pivoting its strategy in China to move away from mid-range products to offer items that appeal to customers looking for affordability.

The opening of the store was celebrated with a special promotion in the IKEA restaurant, with a 50% discount on Swedish meatballs and other products. There was also a campaign for social media, where customers posting about their visit could win a free shopping bag.

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