A very strong women’s range offering some unique styles is let down by poor shop floor management.
- 9-13 Northgate Street
Boots again dominate at Zara, with distinguished suede Chelsea and biker styles as well as interpretations of the popular Acne pistol boot. Studs are scattered across styles too, including dressy high heels or casual ballet flats, while metal toe-cap courts, leopard prints and studded brogues are all here. Catwalk-inspired styles not seen elsewhere include interpretations of Valentino’s studded pointed strappy heels and a floating block-platform heel. Men’s is weaker with a much smaller offer. Last season’s military boots look tired alongside contrast-panelled biker boots and desert boots, but heritage trainers, featuring contrasting panels of leather and wool, are better.
What Zara succeeds at is offering good quality at fair and competitive prices. Women’s chunky-heeled boots come in at £49.99 – similar to Topshop’s (at £75) and better looking than H&M’s (at £29.99). Strappy buckled rocker boots are a reasonable £69.99. Patent ballet flats are great at £19.99 while more premium, good-quality versions featuring studs start at about £25 and go up to £39.99. For men, leather and suede panelled biker boots (£89) and military boots (£79) are at the higher end but their quality hits the mark.
Zara does well to scatter its footwear around the store, merchandising it well alongside suitable clothing. Dedicated footwear areas are well organised although more should be done to incorporate seating areas and encourage staff to approach customers. On the men’s floor an entire section of shoes was missing price stickers and no staff were nearby to help.