Opening in central London in spring 2021, The Village by Anya Hindmarch is the luxury accessories brand’s move into third-space retailing. Creating a hub of retail, hospitality and blank spaces for an ever-changing array of pop-ups and events, The Village offers a place for shoppers and the public to meander through, sip a cocktail, have their hair styled with friends or shop for the brand’s various collections.
For Hindmarch, The Village is about building a sense of community and localisation for the brand, instead of it having various global outposts with no engagement beyond the shopfront. It’s purposely high-low offer allows visitors to grab a humorous Hindmarch-themed cake or biscuit to go, or spend time discussing a bespoke handbag or creation. ‘It’s a place where we can talk really directly to our community and to our followers and to our customers. And, it can be ever-changing,’ explains Hindmarch.
In Japan, fashion retailer Uniqlo is not only engaging with third-space storefronts but centring an entire shop on the idea of outdoor play and exploration. The Yokohama Bayside store is designed to entice families to spend the day visiting. ‘The whole roof was literally turned into a playground… People can bring along a picnic and eat lunch while overlooking the marina,’ explains Takahiro Kinoshita, group executive vice-president and creative director of Fast Retailing, Uniqlo’s parent company.
Highlights of the exterior include a colourful bouldering wall by Japanese playground equipment company Bornelund, slides, and a climbing frame for children, while a glass-topped area with seating provides a quieter spot to sit and enjoy the view. According to Kinoshita, this third-space strategy is all about making Uniqlo flagship stores must-visit spaces. ‘We know that people need a reason to visit a bricks-and-mortar store, so we want to make shopping a delightful experience,’ he adds.
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