Heal’s has revealed plans for a major transformation of its flagship Tottenham Court Road store in London, with the retailer set to take over the adjacent vacant ground floor and basement space previously occupied by Habitat.
The expansion will see a remodelling of the prestigious home and furniture retailer’s ground floor showroom, which has held prime position on Tottenham Court Road for more than 200 years. Reconnecting the space between the current Heal’s store and the vacant retail unit, a striking new lobby entrance will also be created, with an extended façade running from Alfred Mews up to Torrington Place.
The planning application, submitted in May, seeks listed building consent for internal refurbishment and structural alterations to remove internal walls and create an open-plan design throughout the entire ground floor, plus expansion into the basement floor in the vacant unit. This will provide a larger street level retail space for customers to browse furniture brands and designs, while creating greater visual impact externally. Plans include widening of the shop frontage from the current 50 metres to 100 metres.
“FOLLOWING A RECORD FINANCIAL YEAR, DRIVEN BY THE SUCCESS OF OUR DIGITAL MARKETING PROGRAMME AND ENHANCED ONLINE SHOPPING EXPERIENCES, WE HAVE BEEN STRATEGICALLY EVALUATING OUR PHYSICAL RETAIL SPACE TO BEST COMPLEMENT OUR EXPANDING ECOMMERCE OPERATIONS”Heal’s CEO Hamish Mansbridge
Heal’s CEO Hamish Mansbridge commented: “Following a record financial year, driven by the success of our digital marketing programme and enhanced online shopping experiences, we have been strategically evaluating our physical retail space to best complement our expanding ecommerce operations. That means retaining and driving customer loyalty, both online and offline, and keeping bricks-and-mortar as a relevant and continuously vital part of our multi-channel retail mix.
“Our flagship London store is an integral part of the Heal’s brand, heritage and future. When the adjacent space – previously occupied by Habitat – became available, it presented a timely opportunity for us to look at our Tottenham Court Road presence and how we could enhance the shopping experience of our customers, with a larger, easy-to-navigate, street level showroom.
“After more than two centuries, it’s exciting to have the opportunity to continue evolving, reimagining and innovating our retail spaces and experiences, so that they can be enjoyed and appreciated by our current customers and many generations to come.”
Heal’s has been designing, making and selling quality furniture for more than two centuries. Starting out as a mattress maker in 1810 and later embracing the ideals of the Arts and Crafts movement, Heal’s has a long history of collaborating with prominent designers. Heal’s said it is ‘as passionate today as it’s always been, about introducing new ranges, discovering stars of the future, and pushing the boundaries of outstanding contemporary design’.