Lavazza opens doors of UK flagship store
Leading global Italian coffee company, Lavazza, inaugurates its first UK Flagship store this month, bringing an immersive coffee experience to London for the first time. This opening sees Lavazza open its first coffee concept outside of Italy, blending traditional Italian coffee culture within the UK. Set across three floors, with a square footage of 500m, the UK Flagship store is located in a historical building opposite the iconic Liberty store on Great Marlborough Street, in the heart of Central London. Inside, it invites coffee lovers to experience the extraordinary world of authentic coffee through an exciting journey of discovery that brings the store’s concept, “Coffee Design”, to life. From the finest 1895 espresso to Italian regional coffee-based recipes, unique coffee design creations and more – the Flagship store celebrates the coffee bean in all its forms where ‘coffee takes different shapes’. Coinciding with the official launch, Lavazza has also developed an interactive augmented reality game with “Lavazza PickmeUp London”, whereby customers can collect virtual cup icons (from 23 September) to win a selection of prizes over a three-week period.
“The UK coffee market is primarily made up of chains, but at Lavazza we are introducing a completely different concept than what’s currently available for the UK coffee lovers and enthusiasts”, says Pietro Mazzà, regional director UK & Nordics and General Manager Lavazza UK. “So much more than a coffee shop, Lavazza’s London Flagship store will introduce consumers from the UK and abroad to the world of great Italian coffee, to be enjoyed in all its different forms, taking them on a journey from bean to cup and immersing them in the very best that Lavazza has to offer. Not only through authentic coffee experiences, but also through top gastronomy, design, culture and more.”
On the ground floor, visitors can take a seat in the Caffetteria. The counter, designed by celebrated Italian architect Carlo Ratti, takes inspiration from the shape of the coffee bean and is made from a combination of brass and re-used exhausted coffee powder. The same designer also conceived the unique, flexible bench within the wider seating area to ensure customers can be seated at a comfortable distance from other guests. While seated, guests of Lavazza can enjoy traditional coffee recipes alongside exquisitely made patisserie for an elevated coffee moment. Those visiting the store later in the day can sample the unique ‘Coffeetails’ menu – created by the Lavazza Training Centre – or bespoke cocktails created by the Campari Academy for Lavazza – such as Nuvola Spritz or Negroni Cold Brew – paired with a selection of small bites for the ultimate Italian aperitivo. uipped with the latest technology, Lavazza has partnered with Gruppo CIMBALI to provide all its espresso machines in-store, Faema E71e which have been exclusively customised to serve the new 1895 specialty coffees and offer people a real Italian coffee experience.
The area is also adorned with an iconic, customised chandelier – patented by Lavazza, designed by JHP and produced by Bilumen – which is made of 700 resin coffee beans and mirrors the chandelier in the Milan Flagship store. Exemplifying its dedication to creating a safe, clean space for its customers, Lavazza has installed a state-of- the-art sanification system for air conditioning and surfaces.
The customer journey for this immersive brand experience where “walls come to life” has been created by Ralph Appelbaum Associates who utilised a range of design techniques to communicate Lavazza’s signature combination of tradition and innovation.
Moreover, for busy Londoners or tourists on the go there is also the option to order hot and cold coffee recipes – made from Lavazza’s NGO certified La Reserva de ¡Tierra! range.
Tasting Sessions with professional Coffelier
Within the Lavazza London Flagship store consumers can purchase Lavazza’s newest range: 1895 specialty coffee. This range comprises of single origin, blends and precious micro-lot, combining high-quality beans from independent, sustainable plantations with the highest technology in coffee processing. In the grocery area, customers can participate in tasting sessions with a Coffelier – the sommelier of the coffee world – where they will be guided through each coffee’s aromatic notes across different coffee preparation methods. To heighten the senses further, Lavazza has also created an interactive installation above the tasting area, which projects the aromatic flavour notes of each blend onto the ceiling, further cementing the store’s position as an immersive coffee destination.
An exclusive dining experience: where coffee meets gastronomy
Those looking for the perfect combination of coffee and top gastronomy, can proceed up the stairwell – with its stunning coffee design inspired décor – to the contemporary restaurant space on the first floor. Here, guests can enjoy a unique menu curated by Italian Michelin Star chef, Federico Zanasi of Condividere at Lavazza’s Nuvola HQ in Turin. Each dish is freshly prepared for the customer, blending high-quality seasonal ingredients with elegance and a touch of unexpected flair. After their meal, visitors can enjoy one of the 1895 specialty coffee prepared in the cosy cafeteria on the same floor, including the limited-edition 1895 Avanguardia micro lot, which originates from the Yemen. Within this space, the store designers have also created a striking living wall, made from real plants and emblazoned with a visionary, 100-year-old quote from founder Luigi Lavazza, which reads: “I don’t want to live in a world where nature is destroyed” and is testament to the brand’s ongoing commitment to sustainability.
Interactive experiences for the launch
To encourage coffee-lovers to visit the new London Flagship store, Lavazza, in partnership with Yahoo Creative Studios, has created recipe video content and an interactive gaming experience, which further communicate the brand’s unique approach to coffee. Firstly, the new video series will showcase three different recipes available in the London Flagship store, bringing Lavazza’s passion for coffee design to the forefront. This includes three iconic Italian coffee-based recipes which have been re-invented by Lavazza; an Espresso transformed into ‘Coffee Caviar’, Cappuccino served in an unusual, solid texture and a mouth-watering Tiramisu sponge cake.
Secondly, Lavazza has created an interactive, augmented reality (AR) game that will be live for three weeks from 23 September. Within the game, Londoners will be challenged to find AR Lavazza-branded coffee cups hidden throughout the city. Once found, these Lavazza coffee cups can be collected on a mobile phone and redeemed at the Lavazza flagship London store for a free coffee as well as automatically being entered into a prize draw with the chance to win digital recipe cards, new A Modo Mio Voicy (Amazon Alexa-enabled) machines, coffee design experiences and the top prize of a luxury weekend in London; which includes a tasting experience lunch at the Lavazza flagship store, dinner at Pollen Street Social owned by Lavazza ambassador and Michelin Star chef, Jason Atherton and staying at the boutique St Martins Lane Hotel.
“As part of Lavazza’s internationalisation process, the UK is one of the key markets for our business, so the Lavazza London Flagship store represents a strategic investment for us as a global brand and reinforces our dedication to the local market. We are so proud to finally open the doors to a store allowing us to connect to our UK and international consumers on a new level, with tangible Lavazza brand experiences” says Gloria Bagdadli, global retailing director, Lavazza Group.