Cardiff was in for a treat when John Lewis opened its largest department store outside of London in the Welsh capital.
The store became the first in the department store chain’s portfolio to house its new-look womenswear concept, which has a designer area and denim wall. Special collaborations with designer Celia Birtwell sit alongside luxury brands like Mulberry and Stella McCartney lingerie, while brands such as BZR by Bruuns Bazaar - an exclusive for John Lewis - give the retailer a strong point of difference. Created by design consultancy Dalziel & Pow, the concept was inspired by luxury department store Lane Crawford in Hong Kong and has elevated John Lewis to a more premium fashion positioning with its boutique feel.
1. Toast, Cheltenham
82 The Promenade, Cheltenham
Stripping back the decor of a Regency building, Toast’s store reveals original Georgian features, accompanied by a wall of vintage books selected to draw on the town’s literary heritage.
2. Debenhams, Newcastle
26 St Andrews Way, Newcastle
Debenhams overcame structural difficulties with a floor-to-ceiling shopfitting system with no back panels to maximise the natural daylight of its store’s spectacular curved, glazed triangular windows.
3. Eton Clothing, Sheffield
65-67b Division Street, Sheffield
This large store stocks a range of high-end brands targeted to the affluent Sheffield shopper, especially the city’s international students who have cash to flash.
4. Moss Bespoke, London
35 Blomfield Street, London EC2
Moss Bros threw down the gauntlet to traditional tailors this year with the launch of Moss Bespoke in London, which offers bespoke suits at great value prices.
5. Pennyblack department within Lynx Womenswear, Harrogate
20 West Park, Harrogate
The Pennyblack department launched for spring 10 and was the first of its kind in the UK. It has already won over local shoppers and has proved itself commercially.
6. Topman, Oxford Circus revamp, London
222 Oxford Street, London W1C
Topman revamped its London flagship by doubling in size and introducing dedicated product areas, a barber shop, cafe and lounge.
7. Topshop, Knightsbridge, London
70 Brompton Road, London SW1
Topshop was confident it could trade alongside luxury powerhouse Harrods and opened on this premium stretch of London retail territory. Topshop is gunning for a slightly different customer here, thus widening its appeal.