Fashion retailer Opening Ceremony recently opened their first flagship outside the US in Tokyo’s trendy Shibuya district. The store, an eight-level, 26,000 sq-ft department store, is more like a “mini-mall” of shop-in-shops that celebrate the attitude of each featured brand. This location features designers such as Rodarte, Alexander Wang, and The Row.
Opening Ceremony first opened its doors in New York in 2002. The concept applies the mission statement of the modern day Olympic Games–to creatively combine sports, business, and global participation–to the world of fashion by featuring well-known designers, up-and-coming labels with vintage goods and flea-market finds, all from different parts of the world. Collaborative design is a major part of their retail philosophy. Opening Ceremony Tokyo joined forces with Tretorn, Sanrio, Betsey Johnson, and actress Chloe Sevigny (to name a few) to create private label products.
They opened their second location in Los Angeles in 2007, where they introduced the idea of boutique shopping with the “mini-mall” format. (Fun fact! The LA store is located in the former dance studio of Charlie Chaplin.) Each designer’s space has unique fixturing and merchandising as if it were the brands own store. This same format is brought to the Tokyo location with each of the eight floors embracing a unique theme, like “A Trip Across America,” “City of the Future,” “A Walk in the Park,” and “Office Space.”
Besides their stores they also have a showroom in New York, as well as, satellite showrooms in LA and Paris four times each year to “truly offer designers an international agenda.” The showrooms reflect the concept of their stores but have a more flea-market, meandering-type environment.
The “mini-mall” concept isn’t unique to Opening Ceremony–there’s also Dover Street Market in London and Urban Outfitters’ Space 15 Twenty in Hollywood. These shopping venues enhance the customer experience by combining food, art installations, performance spaces, and rotating vendors and pop-up shops to celebrate the creative spirit among complementary brands and designers.