Last month the Harvey Nichols flagship store in Knightsbridge, London unveiled its new menswear department which had just undergone a nine-month refurbishment. However, the crowning glory of the revamp was revealed with a launch party just this week: Project 109 – named after the store’s street number – is an innovative space dedicated to the A – Z of men’s fashion trends.
The menswear department is located on the bottom two floors of a building dating from the 1800s. And this area was the first to benefit from Harvey Nichols plans for a four-year, store-wide renovation. This is a timely move given the expansion in men’s fashion. A report released in March by Euromonitor International forcast that sales in menswear will rise to $40 billion over the next 3 years.
So, what makes Project 109 different? According to Darren Skey, Head of Menswear, Harvey Nichols have set out to create an ‘eclectic lifestyle area’. Fashion Director, Anita Barr adds that they are challenging ‘traditional retail conventions’ with this ‘ever-changing curated edit of fashion, grooming and lifestyle brands’ located within a ‘beautiful new space’.
Project 109 presents a complete retail experience for men. What is perhaps most innovative about the space is that it will feature a rotating schedule of brands over the course of the year. The brand chosen to launch this initiative is streetwear label, Hypebeast, who in their first European exhibition will be taking the stand until the 3rd of June. Hypebeast Kicks will feature their favourite rare and often unseen sneakers. The select collectors Ron Raichura, Tom Ray and Ben Perry will rotate every week, giving shoppers the chance to see a full spectrum of ‘the world’s hardest-to-get footwear in the flesh’ said Hypebeast. Each Saturday during May, Printing Live will also be in-store, giving you the opportunity to get your hands on unique T-shirts from Maharishi and Gasius.
In addition to the Hypebeast collection, there is a barbershop, the first in London for Brighton shop AONO plus a grooming & fragrance bar. Once you have gotten all freshened up, you can enjoy something to eat or perhaps a cocktail at Wallpaper* Bar + Kitchen. Designed in conjunction with Wallpaper* magazine, this kitchen offers artisan sandwiches during the day and an evening menu where a carefully curated menu of cocktails may just outshine the food offerings. Harvey Nichols have compiled a selection of cocktails from ‘The World’s 50 Best Bars’ and brings them to you in the sleek surroundings of Project 109.
Architects Virgile & Partners have ripped out the old and in its place created something new and innovative: Concrete walls, set off with metallic fittings and stone podiums, give the 28,000 square foot space – home to 270 brands – a satisfyingly masculine feel. Guys, next time you’re in London, you know where to go..