While steadily rising rents have proven too much for some Robson Street businesses, one locally based retailer is thriving in the shopping district.
The U.K.–founded Lush Cosmetics has announced that it will be shutting its doors at 1020 Robson Street this Thursday (January 12) to complete a hefty expansion and makeover.
The new shop, which will stretch into the adjacent space previously occupied by Danier Leather, will be double its current size. It is expected to reopen in April 2017.
Known for its responsibly and ethically produced body, skin, and hair care goods, as well as its animal-rights campaigns, Lush will be taking inspiration from its 10,000-square-foot Oxford Street location in London, U.K., to design the revamped store.
The interior will feature one of Canada’s first haircare styling bars and a 42-inch concrete sink where customers may test-drive bath and beauty products prior to purchase. Salvaged furnishings and lighting fixtures will help forward Lush’s mandate of reducing waste in its packaging and production.
Speaking to the Straight by phone, Lush’s director of brand Brandi Halls explains that the expanded location will offer consumers and local Lush employees the chance to better interact with the brand.
“We see this as not only a great opportunity to enhance the customer experience, but as a great staff engagement piece, too,” she says, adding that the company employs from 1,200 to 1,500 people between its head office, manufacturing plant, and various retail outposts across Metro Vancouver alone.
The 2,600-square-foot shop will also include numerous consultation stations, where customers may receive product recommendations from Lush associates, and an area committed to the story of Lush’s Charity Pot, a hand-and-body lotion that benefits various grassroots organizations.
“Specifically, this space could then also be used to bring our community partners into our shops, to educate the public on those issues that we care so passionately about,” adds Halls, “and to really create a community space where, when we’re pushing some of our campaigns forward, we can invite our customers in to engage with these values.”
Lush currently operates 250 locations across North America. During the Robson Street renovation, Vancouverites can visit the company’s shops at Pacific Centre (701 West Georgia Street), in Kitsilano (2248 West 4th Avenue), and elsewhere.