Retail in Asia


8 of Asia’s most memorable brand pop-ups and activations in 2023

Pop-up stores and creative activations can provide numerous benefits to brands, creating awareness by capturing attention and reaching a wider audience. Pop-ups also help build brand identity through immersive experiences, showcasing a brand’s personality and values, all while driving sales with exclusive products and convenient shopping journeys.

As brand activations continue to enjoy strong demand across the region, Retail in Asia looks back at some of the most memorable engagements that impressed, created buzz on social media, and attracted foot traffic, from Seoul and Tokyo to Singapore and Greater China.

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Source: Jacquemus

Jacquemus’ Cafe Fleurs in Seoul

After a successful stint in Paris this year, French luxury brand Jacquemus took its Cafe Fleurs pop-up concept to Seoul. Located in the trendy Seongsu neighbourhood, the 2,000-square-foot space was designed to be all-over white with an eye-catching facade that mimicked the Simon Porte Jacquemus-founded brand’s Le Bambimou bag.

The pop-up featured a café with eight drinks on the menu and a flower shop featuring white Lisianthus bouquets. Shoppers could also purchase bags and accessories from Jacquemus’ fall 2023 ‘Le Chouchou’ collection, a line that features cherries as a leitmotif.

Jacquemus has been no stranger to pop-ups since its inception in 2009. In 2021, the brand debuted its first flower shop in Paris during the pandemic, followed by respective Barbie-themed pop-ups in Milan and Paris.

From left: Dior’s Christmas activation at K11 Musea in Hong Kong in December 2023; the ski-themed pop-up at Lake Songhua Seibu Prince Hotel in Jilin Province, China, in January 2023. Source: courtesy

Dior’s activations in Hong Kong and Jilin Province

Dior started the year strong with a ski pop-up store at Lake Songhua Seibu Prince Hotel in Jilin Province, China, in time for the Lunar New Year festivities in January and February 2023. The activation replicated Dior’s iconic Avenue Montaigne flagship entirely out of ice, marking the first time the Parisian couture house has constructed a pop-up location using the intricate ice sculpting technique.

As the year comes to a close, Dior has retained its momentum with a string of holiday-themed activations, most notably in Hong Kong, where it staged installations at both the Hong Kong International Airport and K11 Musea in Tsim Sha Tsui. A Dior cafe was sold out within the K11 Musea mall, while an oversized Dior Christmas tree and carousel took centre stage at Victoria Dockside, framed by the iconic Victoria Harbour.

Source: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton’s Yayoi Kusama pop-up store in Tokyo

In January French luxury brand Louis Vuitton opened a pop-up store in Tokyo, marking its second collaboration with pop artist, Yayoi Kusama. Located in the Harajuku district, the store centred around a “polka-dot avant-garde,” to reflect the Japanese artist’s signature dot design, and featured a plethora of installations and decorations.

At the heart of the store was a realistic sculpture of Kusama herself, dressed in a yellow and black polka dot shirt. The interior used mirror balls and mannequins with the brand’s polka-dot pattern on the background of the ‘Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama’ sign.

Source: Bottega Veneta

Bottega Veneta’s pop up in Taipei

Bottega Veneta recently unveiled a captivating pop-up store at Breeze Nan Shan Department Store in Taipei, ongoing until January 2024. The pop-up store features a distinctive design that lends both the interiors and exteriors a whimsical aesthetic for a one-of-a-kind visual experience.

Calling to mind Bottega Veneta’s use of volcanic glaze, the unique material is incorporated into various architectural elements, objects, and finishing techniques throughout the store. Within its walls, the brand’s exceptional craftsmanship and timeless best-selling products take centrestage, offering a showcase of creativity and elegance.

Source: Burberry

Burberry’s city takeovers in Seoul and Shanghai 

Taking place in the capital’s Seongsu region from October to November, the ‘Seongsu Rose’ activation is the latest stop for Burberry Streets – a series of takeovers that celebrate the discovery and exploration of cities worldwide.

“The event merges the brand’s forward-thinking vision with its rich heritage, bringing modern British luxury to life in new and innovative ways,” said Burberry, describing the Burberry Streets initiative.

At Seongsu Rose, visitors took part in immersive experiences, installations and events, each showcasing the London-based brand’s signature design motifs, such as the rose print and its recently released ‘Equestrian Knight Design’.

Coinciding with the activations, two micro pop-ups — ‘Seongsu Shoe’ and ‘Seongsu Bottle’ — retailed latest shoes and hot water bottles from the Burberry Winter 2023 collection, while a pop-up of Norman’s – a North London café renowned for its British cuisine – served an all-day selection of British classics throughout the takeover.

Symbols of Burberry were also exhibited in multiple locations across the capital, including a purple rose print which featured on flags and buildings on the streets of Seongsu.

Source: Prada Beauty

Prada Beauty’s Gift Factory at Singapore’s Changi Airport

L’Oréal Travel Retail, The Shilla Duty Free, and Changi Airport Group together introduced the Prada Holiday Gift Factory at Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 1, which ran from October 14 through November 23.

The Prada Holiday Gift Factory featured a captivating circular display adorned in a vibrant gold and mint green color scheme, a showcase for Prada Beauty’s fragrance collection with a special emphasis on the Paradoxe fragrance line, which was the brand’s notable launch in 2022.

At the heart of the Prada Holiday Gift Factory, an enchanting ‘Christmas Tree’ made of Prada Beauty gift boxes took centrestage with travel retail-exclusive Prada gift sets. To add a personal touch, travellers could conclude their journey at the Personalisation Atelier, with options to customise their fragrance purchases. The exclusive experience also offered the addition of a seasonal Prada charm, making each fragrance purchase truly unique and tailored to the individual.

Source: Creed

Creed’s touring installation in Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, and Macau

The House of Creed recently unveiled its collaboration with artist Shawn Kolodny for an extraordinary global partnership that merges fragrance and three-dimensional art. The Asia-Pacific launch began in China, featuring bespoke creatives from China, including a 5×5 touring installation that will travel from Chengdu to Hong Kong and Macau.

Kolodny’s artistic prowess will be showcased through captivating spherical sculptures displayed in the window installations of over 30 Creed boutiques worldwide, including prominent locations in China such as Shanghai Xintiandi and Beijing Sanlitun. Additionally, a remarkable 5×5 meter touring installation will journey from Chengdu to Hong Kong and Macau. For the collaboration with The House of Creed, the focus will be on incorporating the brand’s holiday palette, particularly the colours gold and silver.

SEE ALSO: Inside the mind of the Chinese luxury buyer, plus native beauty brands to watch

Source: Veuve Clicquot

Veuve Clicquot’s pop-up hotel in Byron Bay, Australia

Hotel Clicquot first debuted in Byron Bay, Australia last year and made its return in 2023 to Sunshine Beach, a five-minute drive from Noosa. Welcoming guests for three-night stays from from October 13 to 28, Hotel Clicquot offered luxury rooms and amenities, including a Veuve Clicquot-branded swimming pool with matching yellow and white umbrellas for patrons to repose under.

In addition to relaxation, the hotel offered a series of culinary experiences led by some of Australia’s finest chefs, from Peter Gilmore, Martin Benn, and Chris Hemsworth’s private chef, Sergio Perera, showcasing the house’s prestige cuvée, La Grande Dame, according to a press release.