Creating destinations, not just stores

The collision of commerce, culture and connection


Featuring Depop, Heineken, Skylight, Virgile + Partners and Behavioural Scientist Patrick Fagan.

Retail is making a comeback, driven by consumer demand for in-person experiences.

Brands are transforming retail space into more immersive brand worlds, offering rich cultural experiences whilst building stronger connections, community, and belonging.

Recent reports highlight a compelling narrative: physical retail is not only surviving, it's thriving. Leading brands like Prada, North Face, Westfield, and Canada Goose are investing heavily in physical spaces, while 'born online' brands such as Warby Parker are embracing brick-and-mortar stores and pop-ups to enhance direct customer engagement and deliver unforgettable experiences.

The essence of this transformation lies in shifting the focus from mere transactions to immersive experiences, steering from traditional revenue per square foot to a more dynamic, experience per square foot metric. This crucial pivot is not just a strategy; it's a necessity. It drives visitation, forges deeper brand connections, and crafts lifestyles around the brand.

So, what lessons can brands glean from the realms of entertainment, leisure, and the burgeoning Experience Economy to create retail spaces that serve as launchpads for fun, memorable, and share-worthy experiences?

Join us as our panel of experts from Depop, Heineken, Skylight, Virgile + Partners and Behavioural Scientist, Patrick Fagan delve into these questions, harnessing insights from the experience economy, placemaking, and destination design principles. We’ll share strategies for transforming retail spaces into magnetic hubs that attract visitors not solely with their products but with the rich experiences they offer.

From immersive pop-up experiences to the integration of technology and personalisation into the shopping experience, we're redefining what retail spaces can – and should – be.

If you’re a brand wanting to tap into the power of unique immersive experiences to captivate and engage with your customers, register via the regional links below.