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Manolo Blahnik enters Dublin store

Luxury footwear brand Manolo Blahnik is to open its first concession in the Republic of Ireland in Dublin department store Brown Thomas.

The concession will open in October alongside the 6,500sq ft Brown Thomas Shoe Rooms area. Run by Shoe Studio, it will be about 800sq ft and will have its own shopfit. The Shoe Rooms already features Jimmy Choo, Shoe Studio and LK Bennett concessions.

The deal is a real coup for Brown Thomas, as luxury footwear brands are seldom keen to open department store concessions, preferring to open company operated standalone stores. Manolo Blahnik has a shop in Old Church Street in west London.
Brown Thomas chief executive Nigel Blow said: “This development underscores the claim that our designer footwear offer is among the most impressive in Europe and North America.”

The launch of the Manolo Blahnik concession is understood to have been prompted by the rise in luxury goods sales in the UK and Ireland, particularly top-end footwear and accessories. Department stores have also had success with luxury categories in recent months.

Selfridges said its sales of skyscraper heels had risen by 35% in the past two weeks after actress Gwyneth Paltrow was seen wearing ultra high-heeled designer shoes to the premier of the film Iron Man. The department store has sold more than 200 pairs of the “fetish shoes” in the past two weeks at its London Oxford Street branch alone.

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