The future of physical retail

Brand executives explain why they’re still investing in new store locations that are complete with coffee bars and art installations for the post-pandemic landscape.

Roberto Compagno, the chief executive of Slowear, the Venice-based luxury apparel maker known for its timeless designs, spent a good deal of the pandemic planning store openings. While retail destinations reeled from closures and a dearth of consumer foot traffic in 2020, Slowear opened a new 1,150-square-foot store in Chicago in October, outfitted with a sitting area serving espresso and prosecco to encourage shoppers to stay awhile. Shortly after, a new shop opened in Brooklyn, bringing the company’s US store count to three locations. A fourth in New York’s West Village will follow this year, with additional stores planned for San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dusseldorf, Hamburg and Berlin. In all, Slowear is planning to open about 25 new stores globally in the next two years.

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