John Lewis launches try-before-you-buy experience

Over the weekend, John Lewis launched The Residence, the first ever fully furnished in-store apartment within its Oxford Street London, Liverpool and Cambridge stores offering customers the ultimate-try-before-you-buy experience.

The Residence offers customers the chance to stay overnight and host private dining experiences, while exploring the retailer’s product range, with everything from fashion to homewares, furniture and technology inside the apartment available to buy as part of the ‘Only Here’ autumn exclusives campaign.

John Lewis launches try-before-you-buy experience

Each Residence includes an expansive living and dining area, a fully furnished bedroom and the Oxford Street flagship store also features a fitted kitchen, a study and an indoor terrace that will overlook Cavendish Square. They have all been designed to showcase the characteristics of a home, such as a daily newspaper delivery, fresh coffee, its own scent and the sound of the radio in the background. With the cupboards and wardrobes featuring the latest autumn/winter products.

The spaces will be open daily for customers to try with The Residence expert team being on hand to encourage them to touch, rearrange, sit, play and try on the product.

John Lewis launches try-before-you-buy experience

For a select number of customers, Saturdays at The Residence will offer the ultimate night-at-the-museum style experience where they can apply for an overnight stay, which features a 60-minutes of after-hours private shopping time across the whole store, and an access-all-areas tour of the department store, including the underground stockroom.

John Lewis launches try-before-you-buy experience

John Lewis opens The Residence apartment try-before-you-buy experience

In addition, once a week at The Residence in Oxford Street customers will be able to apply to host their dream dinner party for up to ten people. During the privately catered experience a chef will prepare and serve a special menu with guests able to request their favourite cocktail.

John Lewis launches try-before-you-buy experience

They will also be able to pre-select their music playlist and choose their preferred table setting from the John Lewis collections. To end the evening, they can either while the night away with a selection of dinner party board games, or cosy up in front of one of the shop’s plasma screens.

At The Residence in Liverpool and Cambridge, customers will be able to apply to host their own private brunches. Every Saturday up to six guests will be able to have a two-hour dining experience including Mimosas and brunch dishes. Guests will receive a newspaper delivery of their choice and will be able to listen to morning radio as well as personal shopping advice from The Residence concierge.

John Lewis launches try-before-you-buy experience

The Residence will also host a series of free customer workshops where customers can “pop in” to learn niche skills for the home, from how to choose the duvet and pillow that best’s for them to a lightbulb masterclass, and tips on how to host parties at home.

Peter Cross, John Lewis director of customer experience, said: “We want our customers to discover an altogether different way of shopping. By encouraging them to bounce up and down on a bed and sit around a dressed dining table, we are aiming to create an environment which is a close as possible to their homes. Our expert partners will be on hand to help customers shop, explore, dine or even stay the night.”

Images: courtesy of John Lewis