Kathmandu opens new South Australia flagship

Kathmandu_Rundle 4Adventure retailer, Kathmandu, opened its newest South Australian store in premier retail destination, Rundle Mall, in Adelaide’s CBD on October 7.

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Following on from the success of Kathmandu’s Glenelg and West Lakes stores, which both opened in the past two years, this new outlet is the retailer’s seventh in the state. It is also Kathmandu’s new flagship store for South Australia.

As at July 31, Kathmandu had 160 stores across Australia and New Zealand. Kathmandu property and leasing manager, Mark Ashton, told

Inside Retail Weekly that another 20 stores are on the cards for the retailer.

“We will continue our expansion in Australia and New Zealand, with our long-term target of 180 stores across Australasia,” Ashton said. “We are currently assessing potential locations in Adelaide and South Australia – there is a lot of opportunity in the state.”

Located at 120–122 Rundle Mall, the new store occupies 800sqm and incorporates parts of the original structure, which was built in 1892.

The foundations and some of the walls of the original building were retained, with the architecture and design concept developed by Kathmandu’s in-house design team, Ashton said.

Kathmandu_Rundle 2

Sustainable history
Elaborating on the design brief, Kathmandu store design and development manager, Gabriele Accadia, discussed the details with Inside Retail Weekly.

“The beautiful features of the building were seen as an asset and incorporated into the overall design to enhance the space,” Accadia said.

“Sustainability is one of our core values, and with Rundle Mall an opportunity to utilise the natural features of the building presented itself. These features consisted mostly of full height original brick walls and roof structure which were seen as complementing our brand and brand values, and were used to their maximum potential.”

“When coupled with a new, fully glazed shopfront and recycled timber floors, a beautiful blend of aged and modern contemporary finishes reveal themselves and provide the ideal backdrop for our great products to shine.”

She further explained that in delivering the new store, Kathmandu focused on understanding what defines a ‘flagship’ and what it stands for, through a rigorous internal process in conjunction with a detailed customer research exercise.

“The brief was (thereby) born – the purpose of which was to ensure that the way the offer is presented, the store team operate and the environment itself are all linked back to our customer,” Accadia said.

Product telling
The product segmentation throughout the store – the way they are grouped and presented together – has also been designed in a way that allows storytelling. “This allows our customers greater vision on how our numerous products provide travel solutions, and how customers can mix and match to suit their needs,” she said.

The fitout includes more in-situ adventure spaces across two levels, with a focus on the camping and adventure accessories range, in addition to the clothing range for which the retailer is renowned. To complement this and further bring products to life, large mannequin displays and LED screens have been employed.

Interesting triangular wooden shelving showcases the latest adventure boots and shoes and also provides an on-trend partition as well as aligning with the natural materials used.

The light-coloured wood featured around the lighting as well as the shelves harmonises with the different tones of the wooden floors and is offset by the incorporation of black matt steel beams and clothing rack frames, giving an up-to-the minute industrial look as well as complementing the outdoor Kathmandu stories.

Kathmandu_Rundle 1

Seasonal timing
As camping and local ‘staycations’ have had a resurgence in recent years, Kathmandu expects there to be a lot of interest in tents and outdoor travel accessories this season.

Opening ahead of the busy summer season was crucial, Kathmandu South Australia area manager Shelley Wyllie said, with locals expected to opt for close-to-home summer holiday destinations due to the low Australian dollar.

“Summer and winter are always busy periods for adventure planning, and with the heat coming earlier to the region this year, we are looking at a busy lead-in to Christmas as Adelaidians prepare for their holidays,” Wyllie said.

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