Hybrid Retail Flagships: US Boom
US retailers are continuing to add hospitality to the shop-floor mix – using a consciously convivial lifestyle experience to broaden out their brand appeal.
- Luxury design label Ralph Lauren has opened the first flagship for its Polo Ralph Lauren range on Fifth Avenue, NYC. Alongside the full range of women's, men's and kids' apparel, accessories and lifestyle products, the store also houses Ralph's Coffee – the brand's first ever coffee shop.
- Los Angeles-based fashion brand Band of Outsiders has opened a flagship store on Wooster Street in SoHo, New York. Taking a flexible, hybrid approach to the store's design, product displays are easily movable to allow space for in-store events, while a miniature outpost of the cult Momofuku Milk Bar restaurant is situated at the front of the store.
- The addition of Milk Bar follows a co-branded cookie product and food truck, and also serves as a nod to the passions of Band of Outsiders' American creative director, Scott Sternberg. He once penned a cookie blog, titled: If You Don't Like Cookies, You Might Not Have a Soul.
- Taking hybrid retail to a mass scale, Philadelphia-based Urban Outfitters Inc.'s lifestyle brand Anthropologie is set to expand its existing chain with a series of new stores three times the size of its current format, in order to accommodate both dining and beauty services. Part of the plans laid out in its latest brand manifesto, the aim is to increase dwell time from one hour to two or even three, in a bid to double sales by 2020.
For more on hybrid retailing strategies, see Retailer Restaurants and Hybrid Retailing. See also the blogs posts Urban Outfitters' Local Hybrid Store, Levi's Commuter Workspace, Debenhams' Food-Enhanced Flagship, and Guerlain's Restaurant.