‘Overwhelming’ results from Macallan’s Taipei boutique

By Kevin Rozario |

Macallan Taipei 1The autumn opening of The Macallan’s first standalone boutique at Taiwan’s Taoyuan International Airport, in partnership with Everrich Duty Free, has yielded very promising initial results – and further rollouts, probably in different retail formats, are likely.

“The initial results of the store in Taipei are overwhelming especially at the top end where our most premium expressions sold out within a couple of weeks,” Aristotelis Baroutsis, Managing Director of Edrington Global Travel Retail, tells TRBusiness. “We were expecting high demand but were still caught by surprise when our expectations were exceeded.”

Baroutsis: 'We were expecting high demand but were still caught by surprise'.

Baroutsis: ‘We were expecting high demand but were still caught by surprise’.

Taiwan, being the largest DF&TR market for The Macallan, was an obvious choice for what is a highly immersive brand experience, designed to engage not only existing Macallan fans and whisky connoisseurs, but draw in a new generation.

“There are very few single malt brands with the appeal, heritage and brand equity to support an initiative like this,” notes Baroutsis. “It’s a testament to The Macallan’s standing and popularity in Taiwan.”

The 44sq m store is inspired by The Macallan’s new distillery and visitor experience [set to open in early 2018] and houses the brand’s widest product range in DF&TR – including the travel exclusive 1824 Collection [the brand’s founding year].

The boutique aims to bring Macallan’s heritage to life. “Consumer engagement and storytelling is at the heart of our strategy for growing The Macallan,” says Coral Gill, Regional Brand Director, APAC and Global Travel Retail.

AN INTERACTIVE EXPERIENCE

Detailed design elements and interactive digital installations give travellers an insight into the DNA of the whisky, centred on the crucial role of wood. Master of Wood highlights the three cask types that the single malt matures in: European and American oak casks seasoned with sherry, and American oak seasoned with Bourbon.

Macallan Taipei 2

There are also other experiential elements such as Wonder Wall which uses video content to attract travellers into the boutique, and Master of Taste, an interactive exploration of aromas and flavours that recommends the correct expression based on traveller preferences. Ultra -rare and exceptionally fine expressions are showcased in dedicated spaces, and to celebrate the opening a series of boutique-exclusive, limited edition items are also available.

For airports looking to emulate the store at Taipei, the positive news is that Edrington is allocating funds for further retail expansion. But Baroutsis is clear about his priorities: “Quality is more important than quantity – it needs to be the right partner at the right airport – and the right space with a prime location.”

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