Galeries Lafayette Champs-Elysées| A New Retail Experience
Galeries Lafayette Champs-Elysées has opened its doors and has quickly become a must-see attraction in Paris.
The French department stores expansion is in-line with the reboot of the prestigious luxury avenue, one that will include the opening of Nike, Dior, and Chanel - among other brands. Opening its doors on March 25th the new Galeries Lafayette is a four-story 70.000 square-foot retail space bursting with even more luxury than the Boulevard Haussmann flagship. Here is a quick snap of my experience at the new storefront.
When entering the new Galeries Lafayette, you walk through a vortex-tunnel of lights, as if being transported into the world of luxury. This feature adds to the tech-heavy installments in the retail space.
For its first debut, on the right is a two-story Chanel display - the exterior of the space has no window displays. Instead, six suspended glass boxes will feature the latest collections and popups. To the left clients walk up two flights of stairs and arrive at the Jacquemus cafe - one of the many foods and beverage features in the new retail model. Cafe Citron by Jacquemus and Kaspia is a collaborated effort. Featuring a larger than life replica of his signature bag; decorated in Tuscan tones the space is warm and inviting.
On this floor what could be classified as streetwear designers are featured. A prime location next to the busy cafe, Raf Simons, Bape, Wales Bonner, and Craig Green are hung on motion sensors hangers. Each within its section and monitored by a sales associate.
The hangers are my favorite aspect of the space. They are linked to an internal database that tracks each size, color, and style of the garment. They are in the smallest form which is an excellent example of the integration of technology into the retail environment.
Throughout the client's journey in the new Galeries Lafayette, technological touchpoints were integrated to provide an intimate environment with personalized sales assistance now handled by technology. When greeted by a sales associate client are invited to register for SMS or email services with a chosen representative. All done through a responsive system on the associate's smartphone. It is also important to note that the role of the sales assistant has changed to a "Personal Stylist" recruited from Instagram and fashion academies in Paris.
I was given a quick tour of this floor, dedicated to streetwear, by an associate. He explained the opening of the location with designers such as Off-White who produced capsule collections and could only be purchased at Champs-Elysées.
With Galeries Lafayette Champs-Elysées, we see a step towards true integration of all aspects shaping fashion. From the focus on technological integrations, client experience, nourishing talented designers, and the hiring of stylists as sales associates. Overall the newly opened space gives life back into traditional retail environments.