LVMH makes its mark in London
In December 2018, it was announced that LVMH will be adding to their hospitality portfolio – they already own hotel group Cheval Blanc – with the takeover of the Cipriani owned Belmond hotel portfolio. Totalling 46 luxury hotel, train, river and restaurant properties, the conglomerate paid $2.6 billion for the acquisition. At the time of the acquisition, the group’s chairman and chief executive, Bernard Arnault said “the future of luxury will not only be in luxury goods, as it’s been for many years, but also in luxury experiences”.
In a bid to create the aforementioned luxury experiences, LVMH are set to unite luxury hospitality and retail, with a new London hotel located on Mayfair’s Grafton Street. The Business of Fashion reported that the hotel, which will sit under the Cheval Blanc brand, is planned to incorporate a spa and is poised to host Celine’s new flagship store under Heidi Slimane. The architect behind the build will be Norman Foster whose design practice is famed for high-tech architecture.
The hotel will be perfectly situated next to LVMH owned brands Louis Vuitton, Givenchy, Rimowa, Christian Dior and Loro Piana and Hublot. The hotel is expected to attract tourist and local consumers, which will ultimately attract footfall to the LVMH dominated area.
Whilst the luxury goods sector grew by 5% in 2018 to a globally estimated €1.2 trillion, it has been widely discussed that stores must bring an element of experiential retail to excite the consumer, who is demanding more from brands than ever before.