With the opening on non essential retail in a few days, we will see a raft of new store openings, many of which have been in the pipe-line long before COVID 19. One of the first new openings on our list to visit, will be Browns Brook Street, an 8,000 sq. ft. example of what the future of shopping might look like. Combining Farfetchs technology and Browns heritage, the store is expected to set a new bench mark for retail, seeking to inspire, educate and entertain consumers, whilst layering technology and a high level of personal service along the way.
The store features a “focus room” highlighting exclusive collections, fragrance, jewellery, watches, men’s and women’s fashion, a sustainable restaurant called Native, with a beautiful courtyard garden and the upper floor hosts an immersive room featuring exhibitions and 3 VIP appointment rooms for make-up and tattoo artists.
It’s often said that to go forward, you must look back and we think there is much inspiration for modern retailing from reviewing the hay day of the traditional department store. High level of personal service and strong relationships with customers and brands are not new, and nor is the element of inspiration, theatre and creativity, just look back to 1906 to see what Harry Gordon Selfridge did when he arrived from Chicago. Of course, a new level of technology is required for the modern world and we will watch intently to see how retail brands navigate this new combination going forward.