If you wanted to buy something really special, where would you go? Regent Street, Bond Street, Covent Garden? London’s shopping districts are internationally famous and home to some of the world’s most luxurious brands, they attract buyers from around the world.
Luxury fashion brands know this just as much as consumers do, perhaps even more, and in the past few years have increasingly looked to set up shop in the UK capital. According to a new report from property analyst Savills, three international luxury fashion brands have opened their very first stores in London in 2015; Balmain, Alexander Wang and Versus Versace. Another four are looking to open in London this year.
Traditionally, luxury firms looking to open in London have gone to Bond Street first. However a lack of availability there means they have had to look elsewhere which is why there is a growth and diversity in the luxury market. The new brands heading to the capital are opening in Mayfair.
It isn’t just in fashion where luxury brands are looking to set up in London. DSquared, IWC Schaffhausen, Cuple; these are all brands which cater for the luxury market but a range of retail outlets. As the old luxury neighbourhoods are filling up, increasingly these brands are looking to locations like Westfield to secure space in the capital.
The growth in the number of wealthy inhabitants in London is no secret. Billionaires from Russia, China and the Middle East are much more prominent in the UK capital. With a luxury market, more services are needed to cater for them and this growth in the number of luxury brands suggests this is an increasingly important demographic in the capital that retail is looking to support.
However, before every sector in the capital muses what they can offer billionaires, it’s worth remembering that luxury brands aren’t the exclusive domain of the super-rich. A growing number of international shoppers will travel to cities to shop in luxury brand stores for tax reasons and because they’ve saved up, rather than the fact they wear Balmain everyday for work.
These “luxury tourists” are attracted by the opportunity to browse and not necessarily buy. It’s like another tourist attraction, offering a greater diversity to London’s offer and attractiveness for visitors. Providing places for them to stay in the capital, while also letting them know what else the capital has to offer. At Clarendon we have serviced apartments close to London’s luxury shopping districts at Covent Garden provides a centrally located base (and plenty of living space for all those shopping bags).
The luxury tourist is a growing demographic of a London visitor. The ease of flying in and out of the capital, finding a comfortable place to stay and the range of London’s luxury stores is a big attraction. The growth in the number of luxury brands adds yet more to the list of London’s attributes, incentivising visitors to the capital.