French prestige skin care, body care, fragrance and beauty brand L’Occitane has opened its new Flagship store in the Flatiron District of Manhattan. The store presents a new shopping model designed to address today’s consumer varying needs for information and immediacy.
"We are thrilled to open the first store of the future at L’Ocitane Flatiron, one of our flagship stores worldwide and a premier shopping destination in Manhattan," said Paul Blackburn Associate Vice President Design & Construction, North America. "From entry to exit, the multisensory boutique works collectively to create both an immersive and individualized shopping experience, offering clients an unparalleled assortment of product and service."
L’Occitane commissioned the young, cutting-edge brand creative agency, School House, as lead designers who created a modern interpretation of abstracted design, art, digital and cultural and environmental innovations - forcing a reinvention of brick and mortar retail and elevating Provence from a location to an experience.
In partnership with School House, the new L’Occitane Flatiron aims to be a celebration of time, inspired by the Provençal culture, with multiple layers for an immersive, yet individualized shopping experience. Upon entering, each guest is part of a modern day Provençal open air market with a community board expressing the boutique’s instore services, and a selection of the brands bestselling and top trending products. All experiences take place under a 400 sq. ft. trellis running down the middle of the ceiling, with seasonal changes to feature new ingredient stories.
Inspired by today’s shift in ultra-beauty customization and with a focus on skincare innovations, the store features the first L’Occitane Smart Beauty Fitting Room, where clients can explore, discover and personalize their shopping experience on a digital platform which allows the customer to browse products in a private, digital format that many are more comfortable in, while complimenting with a physical, and sensorial product sampling experience.
To continue to honour the brand’s tradition of hospitality, L’Occitane Flatiron will also feature person-to-person concierge offering amenities and services from sparkling water to fragrance engraving and custom gift creation.
According to Christopher Skinner, founder of School House, "Beauty is a category that comes with a litany of challenges from an activation, creative and retail experience. Our multi-disciplined approach allowed us to design an experience, one that touches on architectural and fixture design, but is rounded out with digital, cultural and merchandising evolutions for the brand. We aimed to challenge the existing retail structure and antiquated working style for the next generation of consumers."