Dublin department store Clerys is aiming to attract a younger clientele following the refurbishment of its O’Connell Street store.
The 160-year-old store ceased trading in July due to extensive storm damage and will reopen tomorrow (November 21) following a four month overhaul of the building.
The store is also introducing several new brands, including White Stuff, People Tree, Almost Famous, By Zoe, Louche, Turnover, Soaked in Luxury, Numph, Moda in Pelle and Stylist Pick.
Simon Smith, commercial director of Clerys, told Drapers the new store format and fresh brand mix would bring a “contemporary, younger shopper” in store while retaining its loyal customer base.
“We have to be careful not to alienate our local customers, but we definitely want to bring in that younger shopper from a different generation, looking for a different shopping experience,” he said.
“We have brought in a dozen new young fashion brands that will be concentrated in a focused contemporary fashion area, but we will still have all of our old favourites for our older customers. We want to cater for all,” he added. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we have other brands rethinking their distribution policies in order to join as well.”
Store managing director Dominic Prendergast praised the brands and suppliers for their support during the makeover. “When the flood happened we wallowed in our sorrows for 24 hours and then we went about seeking how we could maximise the crisis. Our partners were extremely supportive and with us every step of the way,” he said.
Prendergast added: “It was an opportunity for us to rediscover the original heritage and architecture of the building that had been covered up over time. Many decisions were influenced by taking the store to a place where the 1922 store architect, Robert Atkinson would have approved and that we had maintained and possibly enhanced his store vision.”