Beauty Store Business magazine - September, 2019

L'Occitane Opens Flagship Experiential Beauty Boutique in Manhattan

Prestige beauty company L'Occitane, which offers skin care, body care and fragrance, is redefining beauty shopping with the opening of its new flagship store in New York City’s Flatiron District of Manhattan. The boutique is designed to support modern beauty consumers’ need for information and immediacy, all while channeling the heritage, beauty and "art de vivre" of Provence.

The L'Occitane Flatiron experience begins with bright golden L'Occitane shutters on its facade. Inside the store, customers enter a modern-day Provençal open air market with a community board listing of in-store services and a selection of best-selling and top trending products. All store experiences take place under a 400 sq. ft. trellis—a beautiful, architectural framework that spans the boutique, running down the middle of the ceiling, with seasonal changes to feature new ingredient stories. The boutique was designed in partnership with brand-design agency School House.

"We are thrilled to open the first store of the future at L'Occitane Flatiron, one of our flagship stores worldwide and a premier shopping destination in Manhattan," said Paul Blackburn, associate vice president of design and construction for North America. "From entry to exit, the multi-sensory boutique works collectively to create both an immersive and individualized shopping experience, offering clients an unparalleled assortment of product and service."

The Flatiron location also features the first L'Occitane Smart Beauty Fitting Room, where clients can explore, discover and personalize their shopping experience on a digital platform that allows the customer to browse products in a private, digital format, complimented by a physical and sensorial product-sampling experience. A person-to-person concierge is also available, offering a variety of amenities and services, from sparkling water to fragrance engraving and custom gift creation.

To further support the store’s neo-Provençal aura and to establish the community aspect of the store, its staff culture is built on the 'Art of Living,' where little distinction is made between work and play. They are trained to project an attitude and hospitality that brings to life the human dimension of Provence.

"Beauty is a category that comes with a litany of challenges from an activation, creative and retail experience. Our multi-disciplined approach allowed us to design an experience, one that touches on architectural and fixture design, but is rounded out with digital, cultural and merchandising evolutions for the brand,” said Christopher Skinner, founder of School House. “We aimed to challenge the existing retail structure and antiquated working style for the next generation of consumers.” 

[Image courtesy of PRNewsFoto/L'Occitane]