Harrods new huge shoe haven will open this Friday, and marks the iconic department store's biggest project to date.
Designed by David Collins studio to replicate the feel of a luxury hotel suite, Harrods new footwear focussed haven will be spread over 42,000 sq-ft on the fifth floor of the London-based and Qatar-owned department store.
The new unveiling marks the latest project in Harrods ongoing refurbishments, including an previously announced dedicated in-house fragrance boutique. The shoe spread will feature a combination of concessions and shop-in-shops for brands including Manolo Blahnik, Christian Louboutin, Chanel, Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada and Valentino. The footwear haven will also carry the likes of Charlotte Olympia, Nicholas Kirkwood, Balenciaga, Rupert Sanderson and many more.
"It's the biggest project we have ever done at Harrods in terms of capital expenditure," said the store's fashion director of women's wear, accessories, fine jewellery and children's wear Helen David, "Every department store worth its salt has a high-end department for [footwear], and this is how Harrods does a shoe hall." David declined, however, to put a price tag on the investment.
This marks a joint venture with long-time footwear partner Kurt Geiger who will oversee around 90% of the space – with Geiger's chief executive officer Neil Clifford forecasting that sales will hit the 100 million pounds figure in the first year.
The space is also the last that was designed by the late David Collins, who passed away in July last year – too soon to see its completion. The David Collins Studio has worked with brands such as Alexander McQueen and Jimmy Choo as well as on many iconic London commercial projects such as Claridge's Bar, Colbert Restaurant and The Wolseley.
Before the makeover by the David Collins Studio, the area was utilised as a staff canteen and originally it housed private apartments. The design team worked with the original Art Deco and Georgian features, and restored the original cornicing and moldings from 1919. Natural light plays a big focus and oversized couches and love seats have been installed to encourage a "home away from home" feeling.
One thing for sure is that the timing couldn't be more perfect for the opening – with hoards of GCC nationals about to leave for summer vacation after Eid, Harrods latest project will no doubt appeal.