The power of concept stores

Retailers are aware that they must change course if they want to survive in the competition with online retail. They are therefore focusing on concept stores in which they offer visitors a unique experience - something that you can never have at home in front of your PC. Uplace will have 270 of these stores - both major international brands bringing a new concept to Belgium and new brands and smaller local businesses wanting to house their own experience store in Uplace. Experience stores are entirely focused on what you as a visitor are experiencing. The shops are areas in which you start to explore and spend a pleasant time.


The concept of an experience store is expressed differently by each retailer. Some give their store a sober, industrial look - others do the opposite by replicating a cosy living room. Or they focus on a personalised service, for example by printing t-shirts on the spot. There are also those who resolutely renounce the concept of selling and merely demonstrate their products. Anyone wanting to buy their products can do so online - in the shop or at home. Or en route.

Would you like to run a new concept store but are still looking for inspiration? Have you got an innovative idea but don’t know if it would fit in with the Uplace concept? Email us at to see how we can make your dream come true! Browse through our inspiration pages and discover proven concepts from all over the world. Soon, we shall be giving you a sneak preview of the concepts Uplace will be offering. But to give you an idea of the direction we are taking, here are a few examples of some exceptional foreign projects:  

Yayoi Kusama Concept Store

Welcome to the polka dot world of Yayoi Kusama, a partnership initiated by creative director Marc Jacobs. The Japanese designer was the first in a long series of partnerships that saw the light of day in the fashion shops of a famous fashion designer. Every six months, there is a change of artist, collection and shop experience: an approach that demands respect!  

Barbie concept store

Are you a Barbie girl in a Barbie world? Then the Barbie flagship store is made for you! The shop will feature endless rows of exclusive editions of the pink Mattel icon, but also a princess bar, a beauty salon providing a Barbie makeover, fashion designer workshops and an area for children’s parties. Waiting parents can enjoy a Barbietini (pink martini), join in a karaoke and savour the desserts and dainties of a well-known chef at the Barbie Cafe. It goes without saying that there are also plenty of small souvenirs on offer to remember this sugar-sweet day.  

Scott Sports

If you are looking for anything with two wheels and pedals, you will be sure to find it at Scott Sports. You can try out various bikes on their racing track, and a professional computer-based configuration tool will help you find the perfect frame and adjustments suited to your morphology. They also have all sorts of cool accessories to turn every bike ride into an adventure. Not to be missed!

Apple Store New YorkAPPLE STORE

Perhaps the most famous example of a concept store is the Apple Store. The very first Apple branch in New York created a small revolution in the retail landscape. And this revolution continues in all the new branches. Mobile phones, iPods and computers are simply displayed on long tables and visitors are free to try the devices. Sales people become advisers, helping you discover the products, and may eventually also help you with your purchase. Workshops clarify how you can use the software and there are even sessions on how to carry out your own basic repairs.


The three-storey Adidas Flagship Store in classy Fifth Avenue in New York opened in December 2016. It contains a large eye-catching frandstand across the entire width of the store where people can watch sports matches on TV screens. Behind these screens, hidden to anyone walking past on Fifth Avenue, is a selection of products, grouped together per sport. These groups also have a small try-out zone: a mini-athletics track, a quarter of a basket field and a strip of grass.





Professor Bernd Schmitt tells you what experiences and relaxing are all about in the 21st century.