The Best New Store Openings in London – August 2022
This summer has been all about immersive experiences and digital technology, with data and customisation leading the way in retail. We’ve discovered video game displays, augmented reality and even a Formula One car in the best new London store openings this month.
Reformation, Covent Garden
Lifestyle brand Reformation has recently opened a new store in Covent Garden, embodying the brand’s sustainability spirit, as well as offering customers access to ‘Magic Wardrobe’ technology.
This technology lets customers order from a range of sizes and options right from the changing room, seamlessly integrating digital into the clothes shopping experience.
The technology does not overpower the rest of the space, which incorporates sustainability throughout, with an emphasis on natural fabrics and reused pieces for furnishings. This is complemented by Reformation’s “Ref Rotates” pop-ups, a curated selection of sustainable brands who offer locally sourced and traditional products.
HUGO BOSS, Oxford Street
Established luxury fashion brand HUGO BOSS opened the doors to its new flagship store offering a glimpse of the future in integrated digital and physical shopping experiences. The digital-first feel starts before the customer has even set foot in the store, with an innovative video game displayed in the window that can be played on smartphones.
Inside is a digital display of brand influencers, making the connection between buying and social media overt, where customers can purchase items directly using in-store screens. BOSS are also offering clothing customisation, as well as digital guidance for clothing fit, particularly for items like jeans.
Nike Rise, Westfield
Nike is making full use of data to support athletes and sport enthusiasts in its new store in Westfield, with its platform Sport Pulse. This provides real-time stories and events in the local area, as well as information from sport trackers, designed to inspire athletes to achieve their best.
Customers can also make use of RFID-enabled technology at the Inside Track Table to compare different Nike shoes and read the latest reviews. Finally, the Sports Hub is available for those who have made their purchases online but want to collect in store.
The Track, Selfridges
Creating an exciting destination for Formula One fans and collectors is the focus of The Track, a new store experience built at Selfridges by Smartech Retail Group. The Alfa Romeo F1 Team and The Memento Group have partnered to provide enthusiasts the opportunity to view the 2022 show car, alongside other collectibles in a unique immersive experience.
There is also the possibility of owning this iconic car, the ORLEN C42, which is available for collectors to purchase – though any budding fans will have to enquire within the store.
Arthur Sleep, Saville Row
Luxury shoemaker Arthur Sleep is giving customers the opportunity to see how its loafers and slippers are created in its new space at The Workshop. While the upstairs allows one to browse some ready-to-wear items and perhaps have a drink at the bar, the downstairs is a workshop where all the creativity happens. Shoes ordered upstairs can be made and ready in just an hour, meaning they can be collected the same day.
Customers can choose to stay and watch the process, which the owners believe is rare in immersive luxury retail. There is also an array of bespoke customisation available for the discerning shopper, with in-store designers to guide customers on creating embroidered initials or even a family crest. There are plenty of material options to choose from too, including precious metals like gold thread.
Apple, Brompton Road
There were hundreds queuing for the opening of the new Apple store this week with a slate of events happening over the weekend and more planned for the future. Apple is evidently betting big on the creator community, with events geared around learning products such as Procreate and Garage Band.
The store opening was celebrated with a live DJ performance from Just Blaze and additional sessions and Q&As. Apple also had augmented reality experiences for customers to explore, which showed the works of William Blake.
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