World-famous jewellery icon, Cartier has opened its largest standalone store in travel retail at Istanbul Airport in partnership with the joint venture of Gebr. Heinemann, Unifree Duty Free and ATÜ Duty Free.
The joint venture of Gebr. Heinemann, Unifree Duty Free and ATÜ Duty Free operates a total retail area of 53,000sq m at Istanbul Airport and is also responsible for the centre management.
Contract negotiations with Cartier were initially interrupted by the pandemic, but finalised in 2021. The subsequent construction phase went exactly according to plan, reported Metin Yaldiz, Senior Sales Manager Near East & Turkey at Gebr. Heinemann.
“We are thrilled to have now completed the boutique and proud to have ATÜ Duty Free and Cartier as strong partners on board for the special shopping experience at Istanbul Airport.
“The boutique is an LEED-certified store. This certification standard developed by the US Green Building Council stands for ‘Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design’.”
In a statement regarding the new Cartier opening, Heinemann highlights that ‘Cartier has made style history’ with watch models such as ‘Tank’ or ‘Santos’, the famous ‘Trinity’ ring or the ‘Juste Un Clou’ bracelet.
The 130sq m store is located in Zone 4 of the airport, within the ‘Luxury Watches & Jewellery Zone’ and more specifically, ‘Luxury Hill’, surrounded by other iconic brands such as Bulgari, Bottega Veneta, Celine, Christian Dior, Fendi, Gucci, Hermès, Louis Vuitton, Prada and Saint Laurent.
The boutique features a stunning 12-metre-high façade ‘shining like a precious piece of jewellery itself’, says Heinemann, which adds that it is designed with three-dimensional, illuminated elements ‘shimmering like gold’.
Icon bar centrepiece
The store offers a full accessories range from the Maison, including watches and jewellery as well as leather goods and a selection of perfumes and sunglasses. It also features an ‘Icon Bar’ with the brand’s most famous pieces is placed in the centre.
Jan Richter, Director Purchasing FAWJ at Gebr. Heinemann, said on the occasion of the opening: “We are proud to be partnering with Cartier at our Istanbul Airport luxury marketplace. The Maison is one of the top three luxury brands in the world. It stands for legendary watches and jewellery that are passed down from generation to generation.”
New product lines such as ‘Clash De Cartier’ and interpretations of classics such as ‘Santos’, intend to attract to a younger segment of shoppers.
“The Cartier mono-brand boutique is a perfect addition to our range of exclusive brands in Istanbul and will delight travellers,” added Richter. “We thank all parties involved for the excellent cooperation.
“As part of our strategy for the FAWJ category, we are strengthening our collaboration with the world’s leading luxury brands. Cartier is part of the Richemont Group, one of our key strategic partners for this.”
Nicolas Martin, Managing Director Turkey & Levant at Cartier, added: “We are pleased to be opening the largest Cartier boutique in travel retail with our valued partner and operator ATÜ Duty Free at Istanbul Airport. At Cartier, we continuously thrive to build presence in Turkey and we look forward to being a part of all travellers’ journeys in this key international airport.”
ATÜ Duty Free CEO Ersan Arcan commented: “As ATÜ Duty Free, we are happy to cooperate with one of the most valuable brands of the world, ‘Cartier’. We regard the presence of an important brand such as Cartier, which is one of the first names that come to mind when it comes to elite brands on a global scale, at Istanbul Airport as an essential development for boutique retailing.
“We continue to expand our portfolio by maintaining our knowledge and experience in the field of luxury, as we are one of the pioneers in travel retail. We aim to offer a privileged customer experience to our passengers by continuing our product and brand collaborations in the boutique retailing field, in addition to our domestic and foreign Duty Free stores and our special concept stores.”
According to Richter, the luxury segment has proven to be ‘extremely resilient’ during pandemic, and that shoppers are attracted to the ‘intrinsic and lasting value of a precious piece of jewellery’.
“At Istanbul Airport, which was open when many other airports were closed, luxury brands performed above average,” he added.