London is one of the world’s leading capitals in the appropriately named “experience economy”. Art galleries, theme parks or shopping malls invest more than ever in delivering new and conspicuous offerings from services to experiences. A successful retail experience must demonstrate a memorable character full of sensational experiences in which the consumer has to be transformed into an active agent of this process.
Let’s see how retail space manages correlate consumer goods with great art by providing a tailored experience. Dover Street Market (DSM) is a distinguishing case study as it puts forward an innovative approach on fashion business in London and builds strong prospects in customers’ minds.
Words: Yannis Kostarias
DSM enjoys a solid reputation in the luxury fashion retail market. The firm’s unmatched expertise in being appealing to visit and purchase unique products have created steady foundations in the clients’ memory. The need for bigger and more efficient space gave the opportunity to design an inspirational strategic marketing, which embodies two fundamental parameters for this leading fashion business; on one hand to re-establish literally and metaphorically the core values of the brand in the new place, and on the other hand to push the retail experience even more forward by enhancing the aesthetic standards of the buying experience in the new premises.
The old building’s atmosphere in Mayfair’s elegant Dover Street is still marked in my mind. Nevertheless, my recent visit in Haymarket Street in West End London left me mesmerized. A literally eclectic and extensive selection of fashion labels co-exist within a leading-edge space where style, class and quality emphatically contribute to a radical cultural experience. “Beautiful chaos” characterized the visionary perspective of Comme des Garcons’ Rei Kawakubo, who is responsible for the interior design of this market. Moreover, Adrian Joffe, co-founder and CEO of DSM, elaborated this idea even further in the Forbes magazine challenging the terms of “concept store”. He suggested that this term is “out of date” and that instead his vision concentrates on “trying to make the retail experience stimulating and modern”.
Each floor reflects its own personality, while all iconic brands were given freedom to construct their own captivating space for their audience. It is obvious that established firms, such as Gucci or Dior or J W Anderson, are able to play with their brand identity and design fashionable booths for their collections by being more creatively edgy under the DSM’s innovative style and approach. Celebrating the concept of the beautiful chaos, DSM encourages designers as well as customers to experience the feeling of joining a contemporary gallery, where leading fashion houses present their showrooms according to this concept.
It is said that people usually tend to forget what you have said or what you have done for them, but they will remember forever how you made them feel. Modern people, smart customers and even curious tourists desire to feel good and to remember special moments when they go back home. DSM is a fascinating destination where people certainly discover something special either to feel, to see or to buy!
Tip* do not miss the chance to read the biannual art magazine, Lucheon, while enjoying your coffee at the Rose Bakery.