From product offer to service offer - inside the biggest LUSH ever!

On 15th March 2019, we celebrated the opening of the biggest LUSH shop and spa in the world, so big – you could fill it with more than nine million bath bombs! Having delivered over 40 LUSH projects worldwide, this has been our biggest challenge to date.

Spread across 1,380 sqm, this cavernous five-storey building is located on the corner of Church Street and Church Alley, in the heart of Liverpool’s shopping district. This former Woolworths department store, built in 1923, has been home to several brands since the famous retail chain closed including, most recently, Burtons and Dorothy Perkins.

Like many other retailers, LUSH are shifting their focus from product offer to service offer,  by providing fun in-store experiences to attract shoppers to their stores. LUSH have always been passionate about customer experience and their flagship in Liverpool is the epitome of a destination store – featuring a hair salon, florist, perfume library, music corner and refreshments area. However, what truly sets this store apart is the spa – featuring a total of six treatment rooms. One room in particular is tailored to social spa experiences (ideal for hen dos and parties). We helped to create a fully immersive spa experience through architectural details such as device-free ceilings and full soundproofing in the treatment rooms.

LUSH’s move from product offer to service offer is a great example how high street retail needs to evolve, to entice customers to visit physical stores – rather than shopping online. A successful store design should bring a brand closer to their customers and their needs, and LUSH are pioneers in this field – developing their own app so that customers can ‘check-out’ anywhere in-store (reducing queue times).

As well as delivering LUSH’s new concept design, one of our key roles on this project was to help restore this historic building to its former glory. Working alongside LUSH’s design team, we introduced columns clad in Portland stone to enhance the shopfront.  We also restored the original staircase and added a bespoke balustrade to tie in with the 1920s style. This also supports LUSH’s very high environmental standards, as one of the most environmentally conscious design decisions you can make is to retain and re-use existing features. From the skirting boards to the doorframes, all materials were sustainably sourced to enhance the LUSH brand experience.

At Hyphen, we enjoy a challenge and this project had many – from working in a historic building, to meeting tight timescales by finding flexible ways of working that allowed LUSH to design new products whilst work was being undertaken on site. We overcame these challenges through planning and collaboration and together, I believe we’ve delivered a brand experience like no other.