A very interesting article about the "new" Luxury consumers from Newsweek:
July 25-Aug. 1 issue - The old lexicon of luxe hardly serves to describe the Celux Club, located inside Louis Vuitton's Omotesando building in Tokyo. The few hundred fashionistas, artists, celebrities, and other trendsetters deemed cool enough to pass the rigorous admission process and pay their $2,000 membership fee need a swipe card to enter the store. Once they’re inside, the shopping is epic—not only can members purchase the latest LV products, but they also get first dibs on limited-edition fare from other top brands. But Celux is more than just shopping—in recent months, members have enjoyed a lunch party with a sake master and watched the debut of the latest “Star Wars” in Japan (a week before 20th Century Fox’s own premiere). Next year the club will dip its toes into the ultra-high-end real-estate market, opening up a custom-designed apartment nearby.
This kind of luxury experience is the future. We're not saying that every big boutique will have 87 restrooms and a helipad like the newly remodeled Daslu store in São Paulo. But because goods at all levels are increasingly being commoditized, luxury shopping will have to move beyond simply offering expensive goods in a reasonably pleasant environment. To be successful, luxury brands must transform themselves from manufacturers and purveyors of fine goods into topnotch services that can make even the wealthiest elites feel more pampered and unique. In this Special Issue, NEWSWEEK explores this emerging redefinition of one of the world's most high-profile industries.......................................
It's no wonder, then, that the freshest concept to hit the luxury scene in recent memory are the "guerrilla" shops of Rei Kawakubo's Comme des Garcons. They open and close within a year in offbeat places including Warsaw, Helsinki and Ljubljana, Slovenia, as well as unfashionable areas of Hong Kong and Berlin. Opening costs are less than $2,000 per store, and no fashion people are involved—the company hands out clothes to eager entrepreneurs, who have included a Finnish linguist, a Chinese musician and a Polish statistician. The spaces have been used not only to sell clothes, but to show art, produce music and put out magazines. They are, of course, a huge hit with the fashion crowd. Comme president Adrian Joffe says he "wanted to give people an adventure." The lines outside these shops prove that a thrill is exactly what people are looking for.
I think this is fantastic. Shopping should be an experience not a hassle. I often shop at places and buy from companies I know offer customer perks. $2000 is a small price to pay for a relaxing shopping experience
There is a special place in hell for women who do not help other women.
I think it's strange too.........but very interesting from a retail point of view......the insane amount of wealth that is out there is shocking!!!
Very interesting post! Not necessarily be a retail viewpoint! Just like this 'guerrilla' idea, very fresh, very innovative... Just wondering whoelse (except for CDG) get Guerrilla shops? I must go and see... as a gallary visiting...
I went to the Guerrilla Store here in HK last weekend, not much stuff...it was actually mostly Junya/CdG shirt/H+ stuff from Summer 04. They occasionally have some limited releases in collaboration with the company who helped open it, Silly Thing, but the items are quite basic and don't really appeal to me much.