Abercrombie & Kent has opened its first standalone travel store in London, showcasing experiences around the world using the latest digital technology.
The boutique, located on 82 Cheapside, in the heart of the City of London, offers a host of immersive travel experiences, including Skype-to-Store video calls with local A&K experts in 25 countries.
A&K’s flagship boutique, which will be the first of many travel boutiques to open, does not feature desks and brochures.
Instead, Travel Curators use iPads to give customers a taste of the unique experiences available. Vintage map chests hold bespoke canvas maps made exclusively for A&K by British map makers, Lovell Johns.
Geoffrey Kent, Founder and Chairman of A&K, said: “We have been looking for some time to open the first in a series of stores that bring A&K’s in—destination experiences alive in the stores for our clients and we have found the perfect place.
“Ever since A&K started 50 years ago, we have always pioneered new luxury travel services and experiences for our clients and this store does exactly that,” he added.
Every aspect of the open plan space reflects high-end British design, from the handcrafted vintage-inspired furniture by Timothy Oulton to contemporary seating by Tom Dixon. The London City store concept was created by Caulder Moore, with design and build carried out by Cube.
Kent added: “Our store takes the concept of tailor-made travel to an entirely new level by allowing prospective clients to work directly with a skilled A&K Travel Curator to design their trip, supplemented by the latest information from our local offices in destination.”
Time-pressed city workers looking to plan a last-minute getaway will appreciate the convenience of the Sundowner bar in store serving light refreshments.
The lower level completes the pre-travel experience with a Nomad Travel Health Clinic (opening in early December), that offers a same day vaccination service. There will also be a selection of high performance travel gear for those going off the beaten track on safari, on a mountain trek or to Antarctica.
Abercrombie & Kent - which was named Africa’s Leading Luxury Tour Operator and Australasia’s Leading Tour Operator by the World Travel Awards this year - already has a retail concession at Harrods, where it offers an ultra-bespoke travel service open seven days a week. The next boutique store is planned for Monte Carlo.