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Brief Published: 18 Feb 2020

Furniture Brand Creates Cinema to Try Before Buy

Fést Amsterdam

Dutch design company Fést Amsterdam is transforming its showroom into a free cinema space to allow potential buyers to try the brand’s sofas in a relaxed, home-like environment. This soft-sell tactic illustrates the sustained value of bricks-and-mortar stores as a space to reassure consumers before they make big-ticket purchases.

Fést’s recent initiative sees the West Amsterdam flagship store convert its basement into an intimate underground cinema. The concept is a response to the stiff and awkward interactions that customers can have with product in a conventional showroom setting, and instead invites visitors to imagine themselves using the sofa as they would in their own home.

Consumers can access the cinema via a dedicated website, and choose between a short or feature-length film. The space is fitted with two sofas which consumers can switch between, and drinks and snacks are provided.

As evident at this year’s Maison & Objet design fair, enveloping sofas are not going anywhere. However, the use of heavy upholstery and broad forms does not necessarily equate to real-life comfort. Consumers will want to experience how the sofa feels to them and whether it responds to the ways in which they like to sit and relax. 

In a showroom setting, this relaxed and home-like environment offers an entertaining way for visitors to become familiar with the product and ease the transition from shop floor to living room.

For more on how brands can build trusting relationships with consumers through retail experiences, see Soft Sell: The New Retail.