Published on 29 - August - 2012
M&S launches new multi-channel home formatA new generation M&S store, featuring the biggest home department in the UK with 18,000 sq ft dedicated to the category, has opened at Cheshire Oaks, near Liverpool.
M&S' newest home department at Cheshire Oaks is making waves
The retailer has called its 151,000 sq ft new offering its flagship store, with features including free customer wi-fi, high-definition television instore merchandising and 12 browse and order screens. Taking more than 550,000 hours to build, the store employs more than 500 people.
Its home department is the first to debut a new, large-format offer which includes collections from Only and M&S Conran. The department will include 70inch display screens showcasing design themes, iPads and 32inch browsing screens to allow customers to peruse the entire catalogue, and "enhanced product presentation that will use signage, product samples and display". This, the retailer said, will "educate customers how to choose the best product for them as well as tell a product's story and provenance, helping to inform customers and letting them choose items and furnishings that fit their personal style."
Homewares will feature another M&S first in the form of a new duvet and pillow selector which tailors recommendations based on answers to on-screen questions.
The new store is the greenest M&S ever built, featuring several sustainable practices which it claims as "first in retail" including the use of carbon-absorbing hemp wall panels and 'strong-as-steel' FSC-certified softwood timber (Glulam) in the whole of the roof and first floor.
M&S director of retail Steve Rowe said: "In line with our strategy to develop an exciting, easy to shop retail experience for our customers, our Cheshire Oaks store will encapsulate the latest and very best of M&S design and cutting-edge retail technology.
"Here at our brand new flagship store, our customers will find a fresh approach to shopping and customer service, enhanced by interactive technology that creates a truly unique consumer environment. This store represents the future of retail - a dynamic, interactive space that will redefine what it is like to shop at M&S."
The all new M&S was opened by Plan A ambassador Joanna Lumley and M&S chief executive Marc Bolland as well as the new store manager Hilary Wilkinson on August 29.
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