it's been fifteen years since the parisian department store shuttered the doors of its first store in china. but now galeries lafayette is back, bigger and glitzier than the first time around with a new department store in beijing. having learned a lesson or two about the tricky peculiarities of retail in what is now the planet's biggest luxury market, galeries lafayette have struck a joint-venture with renowned retailer i.t from hong kong. the new department store is a major retail statement by the two companies and therefore a massive affair. it covers no less than 47,000 sqm. [505,904 sq.ft.] spread over a six floors of a modern building and boasts an interior that features many references of the galeries lafayette flagship in paris, including its iconic glass dome. the store carries a carefully curated range of more than 500 premium and high-end fashion brands that specifically cater to the city's fashion-conscious demographic.
many of these brands, notably the cool ones that galeries lafayette has brought along from france, are now available for the first time in china. but next to foreign labels, the department store has also dedicated a specific area of the store to emerging chinese designers such as simon gao, vega wang and christopher bu. pulling out all the stops to provide china's legion of increasingly savvy shoppers with an a-grade shopping experience, the department store also has a string of handy services available, including personal shopping consultants that are able to assist in any fashion crisis you may have. and because power shopping can work up quite an appetite - mind you, food is sooo big in asia! - the store comes with elaborate food courts, restaurants and also a special wine shop where you can recharge for your next heavy-duty shopping session. a total of fifteen galeries lafayette stores across china have been planned. location: 100 xidan bei dajie [xidan].