‘Refreshingly curious’ Hendrick’s Gin Perfumery debuts at Frankfurt Airport

By Faye Bartle |

Hendrick's Perfumery

Gwilym Cooke, Head of Brand Marketing for GTR, WG&S with TRBusiness’ Faye Bartle.

ON LOCATION: TRBusiness has been on location for a first look at William Grant & Sons’ new Hendrick’s Gin Perfumery summer activation, which opened on 2 August at Frankfurt Airport in partnership with Heinemann and Frankfurt Airport Media.

The 15 sqm Hendrick’s Gin Perfumery pop-up is located in Terminal 1 Pier B West (Non-Schengen), opposite Heinemann Duty Free’s main store in the terminal.

Active until the end of August, it’s a world-first debut of the new concept, which has been created exclusively for travel retail.

It also marks William Grant & Sons’ first big activation for the super-premium gin brand since before the pandemic.

Designed to drive conversion through sampling and enrich brand affinity among travelling consumers, the activation heroes the humble cucumber – a key infusion in the Scottish gin, along with rose.

It aims to ‘refresh the senses’ through a variety of interactive touchpoints, including the star of the show: an edible cucumber scent and cocktail garnish titled Eau de Cucumber, which has been developed exclusively for the campaign in collaboration with Global Brand Ambassador Ally Martin.

All the elements work together to bring to life the ‘refreshingly curious’ concept and showcase Hendrick’s Gin as a ‘refreshing summer serve’.

“This year we have seen a great recovery in terms of passengers globally returning to the travel retail channel, so we thought it was the perfect time to bring Hendrick’s back with a bang,” Owen Martin, Global Brand Manager Premium Spirits, William Grant & Sons, told TRBusiness.

“We have gone with a full-scale activation for Hendrick’s Original and a brand-new concept that we think is super unusual, peculiar and curious – which is the ethos of the brand.

“We want to hero the cucumber, which is one of our key infusions. We selected the perfume idea because you can never have too much cucumber – you can spray it on your Hendrick’s Gin and tonic for a double dose. For the summer activation, we want to showcase that Hendrick’s can be the perfect refreshing serve.”

Hendrick's Perfumery

The Hendrick’s Gin Perfumery activation is running at Frankfurt Airport from 2-31 August 2023.

Martin also described how the playful perfumery inspired concept encourages consumers to discover the unexpected.

“We wanted to play on the idea of a perfume pop-up and do something that’s fun and a bit unexpected for a gin brand,” he explained. ” We want to try and reach as many passengers as we can with this fun campaign.”

Hendrick's Perfumery

Brand ambassadors are on hand to help travelling consumers discover the fun and interactive activation.

The aim is to reward visitors for their curiosity and the interactive story wall element is a shining example.

Guests are invited to ‘feed’ a cucumber into a porthole in the wall (a form of ‘cucumber currency’) and then peer through the peep holes to view a series of animations that portray ‘magical’ glimpses of the making of Eau de Cucumber.

Hendrick's Perfumery

Visitors can peep inside the story wall to view a series of animations about the ‘magical’ making of the Eau de Cucumber edible spritz.

Hendrick’s Gin and tonics are being served by a brand ambassador at the sampling bar, offering a choice of the original Hendrick’s Gin or the travel retail exclusive Hendrick’s Amazonia.

Visitors can then head over to the dedicated Eau De Cucumber podium to add a spritz of the edible cucumber scent and cocktail garnish, which is presented in handcrafted cucumber shaped bottles that mimic vintage perfume vessels.

Creating further escapism for consumers is the traditional style telephone to to symbolise ‘Answering the Call of the Unnecessary’ – when placing the receiver to your ear, you can hear what the fragrance ‘sounds’ like.

There’s also an oversized  Eau de Cucumber atomiser that presents an eye-catching photo opportunity.

Hendrick's Perfumery

Left: Travellers can pick up the phone and answer the ‘call of the unnecessary’. Right: A close-up view of Eau de Cucumber, designed to be spritzed over a Hendrick’s Gin & Tonic for an extra layer of cucumber.

A striking ‘shop window’ at the front sets the tone for the Victorian inspired perfumery beyond, offering glimpses of the surreal brand world.

The pop-up has been created and produced by London-based creative agency Space.

Hendrick's Perfumery

The pop-up invites travellers to ‘Be revived, refreshed, and transported’.

Hendrick’s Gin is continuing to establish a strong presence in the super-premium gin in travel retail, as the channel recovers and the gin category booms in many markets across the world.

“We’re now able to get, through the likes of IWSR, clear reads of what the market is doing and the great thing for us is that Hendrick’s Gin is dominant in the super-premium gin segment in travel retail in terms of value and volume share,” said Gwilym Cooke, Head of Brand Marketing for GTR, William Grant & Sons.

“And we’ve made some real headway in the ultra-premium gin segment, which is very small, with Hendrick’s Amazonia very dominant within that particular sub-segment of gin as well.

“We can see that we are more dominant in Europe and the Americas and I think for us there is a big opportunity to expand the brand and build awareness in Asia Pacific.”

Hendrick's Perfumery

Left: A summer activation campaign display in the Heinemann Duty Free shop. Right: Pausing for a photo beside the oversized Eau de Cucumber spritz.

While exploring new horizons, however, the brand is staying true to its roots.

“It’s important to keep doing the things that got you there in the first place,” said Cooke.

“For us, that’s bringing Hendrick’s back to its core essence and creating these moments of refreshment and curiosity that surprise people and make them smile. That’s why we’re really excited to be back activating at scale and championing the cucumber with Hendrick’s Original.

“It has been months in the planning and it’s brilliant to see people interacting so enthusiastically with it today. The idea is to tap into people’s curiosity to come and have a good look around and explore and immerse themselves on their way through the airport – and to have a refreshing moment with Hendrick’s Gin.”

Hendrick's Perfumery

Digital billboards in key FRA locations support the activation and bring the ‘Refreshingly Curious’ concept to life.

After visiting the Perfumery, travellers will be able to explore Hendrick’s Original Gin and the travel retail exclusive Hendrick’s Amazonia in a special branded area of the Heinemann Duty Free store.

This area brings to life the latest Hendrick’s ‘Refreshing Encounters’ summer campaign and offers an exclusive gift wrapping service for Hendrick’s bottles purchased in-store.

“We are always keen to develop with our partners innovative summer drinks activations that drive footfall into our stores,” said Jens Peter Peuckert, Director Marketing at Gebr. Heinemann.

“In Hendrick’s, we have an equally ambitious partner we’ve been working together with trustfully for many years. And whether you are a gin enthusiast or an adventurous traveler seeking the unexpected – the Hendrick’s Gin Perfumery is sure to put you provide you with an unforgettable experience.”

In addition, there are digital billboards at key locations around the terminal.

The summer activation will move on to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport in partnership with Lagardère Travel Retail in September, with plans for more locations to come in 2024.

“The Hendrick’s Gin Perfumery is the latest example of how Hendrick’s is able to disrupt the gin category in travel retail in its own delightfully idiosyncratic way,” said William Grant & Sons Global Travel Retail Regional Director for Europe and Americas Rufus Parkinson.

“On one level, the Perfumery will provide some relaxing fun for stressed travellers. On another, the activation has a more informative angle – to alert gin drinkers to the fact that Hendrick’s is oddly infused with rose and cucumber, which is a key point of differentiation for the brand in the crowded gin category.”

READ MORE: Hendrick’s exchanges cucumber for ‘taste sensations’ at Bureau de Change

READ MORE: Three new recruits bolster WG&S GTR commercial & brand marketing teams


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