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Concepts’ flagship takes gallery display approach

Retail Centers

Concepts’ flagship takes gallery display approach

The streetwear retailer forges its online and brick-and-mortar presence.


By John Caulfield, Senior Editor | November 12, 2020
Concepts' Boston outlet is laid out like an art gallery

Concepts' newest store in Boston is laid out like an arti gallery to give shoppers a different experience with each display and floor. Images: Concepts

Concepts, a streetwear retailer with outlets in New York, Shanghai, and Dubai, last month opened its global flagship, a 4,700-sf store on Newbury Street in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood that includes shops from some of the more prestigious names in the fashion world, like Cartier and Chanel.  

The three-floor building, designed by the collaborative Bergmeyer and built by Shawmut Design & Construction,  represents Concepts’ biggest retail expansion to date, and celebrates the company’s roots; Concepts started in 1996 out of a small outlet in Harvard Square in Cambridge, Mass. The Newbury Street location reimagines the retailer’s brand experience by taking the form of an art gallery. The combination of materials used—zinc, concrete, and stone—creates a modern, comfortable environment.

“​This is a historic moment for Concepts, especially as we head into our 25th anniversary. This flagship store is more than just a retail space and with Boston being our home, we’re proud to further infuse our DNA into the city​,” says Tarek Hassan, founder and CEO of Concepts.

Concepts shares a neighborhood with several high-profile fashion retailers.

 

The store was designed in partnership with Sid Lee, a global creative agency that specializes in brand building.

Also see: Take a virtual tour of Concepts’ newest store

The main staircase that connects the three floors takes its cue from the Greek term “theatron,” meaning “a gathering place for spectators.” The store’s design takes shoppers on a journey through Concepts’ different collections. At the heart of the store is a striking zinc cube, designed to cast light from different angles in ways that promote a sense of discovery.

BRINGS VRSNL VENTURE INTO A STORE FOR THE FIRST TIME

 

A staircase in the middle of the store connects its three floors.

 

The ground floor of the store displays Concepts’ private labor apparel and accessories, multi-brand footwear and apparel, and headwear customization. The mezzanine features Concepts’ “Constant Change,” an area for rotating special projects and collaborations, augmented by a DJ booth.

The top floor showcases Concepts’ new women-focused luxury boutique that is the first and only in-store expression of its VRSNL venture, which previously had been available online only. The boutique will include a curated offering of Concepts’ private label, streetwear, and sportswear brand. The upper floor also has a café with made-to-order food and beverages.

Deon Point, Concepts’ creative director, told the website Complex that VRSNL is his company’s response to the challenges it faced in the past getting women to shop its stores. “We had to make sure it was an integral part of what we did,” he explains.

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