French luxury brand Louis Vuitton opens its first store at Hamad International Airport, in partnership with Qatar Duty Free. The alluring and elegant store is located alongside the renowned Lamp Bear feature at the South Node Plaza, and features a towering replica of the Maison’s renowned mascot Vivienne.
The Moodie Davitt Report Chairman Martin Moodie and Brands Editor & Digital Marketing Manager Hannah Tan-Gillies are on location in Doha to bring exclusive coverage of the opening as part of our special series on Qatar Duty Free and Hamad International leading up to the inauguration of the airport expansion later this year. That opening will precede the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, which kicks off on 20 November.
“What we’ve delivered today is a team effort between the Qatar Duty Free team, the Hamad International Airport team and Louis Vuitton,” Qatar Duty Free Vice President Thabet Musleh told The Moodie Davitt Report. “It’s something spectacular and it’s something that I’ve never seen before. We’ve worked on it for a very long time and to see it come to fruition is quite exciting.
“I’d like our customers to come in and be the judge. But I think it’s spectacular. It portrays the brand very well and it portrays Qatar Duty Free very well. It has a very warm feeling. The luxury feeling is great.”
The store offers a full range of leather goods, ready-to-wear, textiles, watches, jewellery, accessories, fragrances and shoes, for men and women. Louis Vuitton said that the store highlights the Maison’s continued focus on travel.
In a year that has seen a flurry of openings, refurbishments and new concepts, today’s unveiling of the Louis Vuitton boutique must surely rank as the crème de la crème for Qatar Duty Free, writes Martin Moodie.
The great French brand has steadily increased its airport retail footprint in recent years, both within international and domestic terminals, all of them fine stores. But this edition, markedly different in character from its peers around the world, almost futuristic in style while simultaneously adhering to the Maison’s trademark elegance and sense of heritage, may just rank as the most thrilling to date.
Nothing here is overcomplicated. The brand’s implicit refinement, together with a nice sense of fun and sumptuous design, fit-out and merchandising are all perfectly aligned. The well-ranged product offer has plenty of room to shine and does precisely that.
The job is never done in retail as Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker was quick to point out to me during a whistlestop tour of the extraordinary expansion project straight after the Louis Vuitton opening.
Its full reveal (and ours) will have to wait for the inauguration but today’s sneak preview (our second) was enough to confirm that this will be an air terminal like nothing else on planet earth. And the commercial offer? The superlatives must also wait for the opening but there won’t be a travel writer on earth not reaching for them.
(Source: The Moodie Davitt Report )