- Kristopher Fraser |
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and global lockdowns, brick-and-mortar became the last point of focus for more retailers. Not only did some stores temporarily close, but others closed permanently as companies unloaded stores that were low performing even before the pandemic and broke leases on others with costly rent.
Then there’s Alexander McQueen, who opened new stores in 20 cities and regions in the last two years, and has plans to double its retail network to 130 units. The company is also planning on opening a bigger store at its current Rue Saint-Honoré location and has a retail project planned for Los Angeles. The news was reported by WWD.
The stores were designed by Alexander McQueen’s creative director Sarah Burton in collaboration with architect Smiljan Radic. The catalyst for their retail rollout was the opening of a new concept store on Bond Street in London at the end of 2018. The new stores that have opened include locations across Asia, Europe, and North America.
The Bond Street store became the template for other stores including the new Miami Design District store, the Art Mall store in Hong Jong, and a Shanghai location. The rollout of stores last year was done in response to where each city and country was at with lockdown.
While the brand couldn’t take the traditional store launch event approach of big opening parties, instead they found ways to connect with customers digitally through a project called #McQueenCreators to foster creativity at home. The Alexander McQueen design team would give people instructions for creative projects via social media and people would share photos of their projects done at home. Some of the team’s favorite ones ended up published on billboards and advertisements.
Alexander McQueen has also integrated its own web platform for a more omnichannel approach. While many other brands are focused heavily on e-commerce, McQueen is still focusing on an in-store experience where customers will be put front and center.
photo: courtesy of Alexander McQueen