It wasn’t too long ago that Japanese retail giant Uniqlo opened its largest global flagship store in Shanghai. It was at a time in 2013, when Uniqlo already had more than 189 retail locations throughout mainland China.
The difference between a standard Uniqlo store and a Uniqlo flagship store is easily distinguishable – from its size to the colourful rows upon rows of items that it has to offer. A world of its own, the choices are inexhaustible!
And now, about a year after the store launch and another year’s worth of renovations, the Uniqlo flagship store in Shanghai has added yet another feather to its cap – the opening of the “Magic For All” concept store, a world first.
Over the weekend, we were invited by our friends from Uniqlo Malaysia for a press preview in Shanghai. Here are some things that we found exceptional about the Uniqlo flagship store in Shanghai:
1. The largest in the world
Located on Huaihai Road M, right outside Shanghai Metro Line 1’s Shaanxi Road Station, the Uniqlo global flagship store in Shanghai boasts about 6,600 square meters of floor space. The store took over the former site of the Yongxin Department Store, on the major commercial street in the heart of Shanghai. It’s so large that it spans 5 floors upwards complete with its own escalators, offering highly coveted Uniqlo items in every category, colour, shade, and size.
2. Mannequins worth gawking at
If you’ve been following our Instagram account closely over the past couple of days, you would’ve seen this short clip of the revolving mannequins at the Uniqlo global flagship store in Shanghai. Much like the Uniqlo store in Ginza, Tokyo, each mannequin spins slowly on a central axis, powered by a moving base. Coupled with fun “pick, choose, and put together” thematic stylings, it gives shoppers a better 360 look at what Uniqlo has to offer.
3. The “Magic For All” concept store
After a year’s worth of renovations, Uniqlo finally opened its “Magic For All” concept store on the topmost floor of the Uniqlo Shanghai flagship store on 27th September (Sunday). The “Magic For All” collaboration is part of a global partnership with animation juggernaut Disney, aiming to bring Disney fans’ childhood dreams to life in product. On the 5th floor of the Uniqlo flagship store in Shanghai is an interactive, immersive, and exciting Disney experience like no other.
4. Hey Mickey, you’re so fine..
A 180-centimeter-tall Mickey Mouse statue and 100 Mickey Mouse figurines (Mickey 100 Series) greet customers at the main entrance of the “Magic For All” concept store. The inspiration for the iconic Mickey 100 Series was taken from 100 exclusive new designs for Mickey Mouse, which will be on display for the first time in Shanghai. 15 of the designs were reproduced on colorful UTs (Uniqlo T-shirts), including 5 designs for children.
5. ..you’re so fine you blow our minds, hey MICKEY!
Interestingly, the “Magic For All” concept store also features, “Shout Mickey”, a special area that captures joyful moments. How does this interactive wonder work? When a customer shouts “Mickey!” toward the lens of the digital camera embedded in a wall, the moment is captured. The image can be sent to the customer’s smart phone as a memento of the visit. True blue Disney fans would find this the perfect way to boost their social media cred 😉
5. A mini Disney park experience
Beware, for you may get distracted. The “Magic For All” concept store is also dotted with wonderful Disney-themed realms to give shoppers an immersive Disney experience, much like walking through a mini theme park. Everything is carefully “plucked” from Disney titles such as Frozen, Alice in Wonderland, and Minnie Mouse, with focus on Uniqlo items. There were also “The Art of Disney Animation Studios” items especially curated by both Uniqlo and Disney on display, featuring popular timeless classics such as “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”, “Bambi“, “Winnie the Pooh“, and more.
6. Get crafty at the UTme! creative area
With unique and innovative being central to the overall shopping experience, the store is the first in China to offer “Magic For All” options for UTme!, a custom T-shirt design service, and for MY UNIQLO, which enables customers to add special touches to items of clothing. In short, the UTme! creative area allows shoppers to get crafty and personalise or “pimp” their clothes up with exclusive Uniqlo accessories such as cute iron-on patches.
7. A “Future” zone fit for geeks
What’s a “Magic For All” Uniqlo x Disney store if it doesn’t have a futuristic display corner dedicated to Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars”? The Uniqlo global flagship store in Shanghai also features a “Future” zone to showcase Uniqlo’s UT range of fashions. It boasts large scrolling LED displays as well as several revolving Stormtroopers straight out of “Star Wars” oh, you know, just casually lurking around while you shop. The chrome shelves and glass boxes also adds to the overall “polished” look and feel of the area.
For more pictures from the “Magic For All” launch in Shanghai, check out the gallery below:
*Pictures courtesy of Uniqlo.
To date, Uniqlo has a total of more than 1,600 stores in 16 markets worldwide including Japan, Australia, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia (yay, that’s us!), Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, UK, and the US.
But the more pressing question is:
When will a Uniqlo flagship store, with wonderful features and immersive experience in tow, open in Kuala Lumpur too?
Well, your guess is as good as ours. Somewhere in the near future, we hope. Fingers crossed! 😉
Meanwhile, don’t forget to check out our interview with Mr. Tadashi Yanai aka Mr. Yanai-san, the founder of Uniqlo, as well as Mr. Josh Silverman, Disney Consumer Products’ executive vice president of Global Licensing here, and also go behind-the-scenes with Uniqlo’s and Disney’s power creatives John C Jay and Allen Au-Yeung here.
The Uniqlo x Disney #MagicForAll collaboration* has been made available in phases starting Monday (28th September) at a Uniqlo outlet near you!
*Availability of “Magic For All” items will vary from store to store with the large stores (One Utama, Midvalley Megamall, Fahrenheit 88, and IOI City Mall) carrying the most variety.