Another reason—and it’s a chic one—to visit Montreal: Fashion’s favorite luxury e-tailer Ssense is set to launch an innovative 13,000-square-feet concept brick-and-mortar to bring all of its beloved digital qualities offline. (While concept stores, like Dover Street Market, The Broken Arm, and Tom Greyhound, have popped up all over the world, Ssense’s concept store marks a first for Montreal.) Under the direction of David Chipperfield, the new flagship was designed to reflect Ssense’s commitment to commerce, culture, and community, all neatly packaged within the framework of the building’s cool concrete structure, a historic five-story space located on 418 rue Saint Sulpice that was erected in 1886.
“Ssense is the physical manifestation of everything we stand for at Ssense. It is backed by 15 years of insights gathered on both ssense.com and our previous retail location and I am confident we have established a blueprint for retail in the future,” says Rami Atallah, co-founder and chief executive officer of Ssense, in a statement. “E-commerce enables scale but is suboptimal in important ways, especially fostering human connection. A seamless integration with physical spaces fills the gaps in the customer experience.”
But what sets Ssense’s Montreal location apart is that it’s free from traditional merchandising constraints. That means, the primary objective isn’t merely to sell luxury items, but to have product act as another layer of content, of experimentation. As such, the store will remain in “perpetual beta” as the retailer continues to explore ways to use the space and play with technology to ensure a seamless shopping experience (the retailer’s installation of Vertical Lift Module, a system to store and fulfill orders, is one such example).
Personal shopping is also a priority: Its appointment-based model allows consumers to have access and try on the retailer’s online inventory of more than 20,000 items within 24 hours. Two levels and eight fittings rooms are specially allocated for such appointments (consultations and stylists are also available).
But more importantly, the layout of the store is built on a grid with adaptable modular glass and stainless steel display partitions that can transform the space to accommodate any activity or project. And this spatial fluidity is already being put into practice, with a performance-slash-installation by Arca / Tormenta for Prada and Ssense that will be available to view through June 3, complete with an exclusive four-piece Prada capsule collection done with the artist Arca (prices range from 5 to 5). Other original projects in the pipeline include artists and buzzy designers, like Virgil Abloh, Moncler, Wales Bonner, Heron Preston, Kwaidan Editions, and Vejas Kruszewski.
Ssense Montreal will open at 418 rue Saint Sulpice on May 3.END
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createdAt:Mon, 30 Apr 2018 13:37:15 +0000