A New Beauty Travel Retail Model Revealed at Beijing Airport

This post originally appeared on The Moodie Davitt Report, our content partner.

CDF-Sunrise Duty Free’s new eight-boutique luxury beauty concept, inaugurated at Beijing Capital International Airport Terminal 2 on May 16, offers a compelling template for other retailers and airports to adopt, according to the brand houses involved.

As revealed in The Moodie Davitt Report’s exclusive report yesterday, CDF-Sunrise Duty Free has partnered with eight brands – Clé de Peau Beauté; Dior; Estée Lauder; Guerlain; La Mer; La Prairie; Lancôme; and Sisley – to create a world-first beauty cluster at the Chinese capital’s gateway.

The beauty cluster at the Beijing Capital International Airport. Photo: Courtesy image

The beauty cluster at the Beijing Capital International Airport. Photo: Courtesy image

The boutique boulevard complements the mainstream perfumes & cosmetics offer nearby and allows dedicated focus behind key stock keeping units (SKUs) and a high degree of personalization, service and customer engagement in a series of refined environments.

“Beauty is what is driving the airport retail business worldwide, and yet it is poorly represented in terms of overall retail space,” one of the senior brand executives at yesterday’s launch told The Moodie Davitt Report.

“Many airports are giving insufficient space to beauty and too much to luxury fashion, which seriously underperforms by comparison,” said another. “This innovation by CDF-Sunrise shows what can be done. The retailer benefits, the airport benefits, the brands benefit and, most of all, the consumer benefits.”

The additional space has allowed the brands to express themselves in a manner rendered impossible by the constraints of a generic perfumes & cosmetics store. Each of the eight houses offers not only high-class boutique merchandising but an ability to engage with the consumer in a much more intimate and personalized fashion.

The Estée Lauder Companies Senior Vice President and General Manager, Business Operations Israel Assa summed up that view during his speech to guests at last night’s spectacular evening celebrations at The Four Seasons Hotel. “It is clear that CDF-Sunrise Duty Free and the Beijing Capital International Airport have the right attitude towards luxury beauty by dedicating free-standing store spaces that are the ultimate form of brand expression,” he said.

In some of the boutiques, the brand houses have chosen to focus on a single line, offering it only in the stand-alone store and not in the main shop. Others, such as Sisley, are only represented in the boutique format, eschewing the main store for the dedicated focus that the solo format allows.

Estée Lauder has embraced the boutique opportunity to present its first airport dedicated Re-Nutriv store – its first stand-alone concept for its popular luxury crème. Lancôme has chosen to focus solely on premium anti-aging skincare line Absolue (the brand’s first travel retail boutique worldwide); while Guerlain presents a beautifully curated selection of fragrances that underline the house’s 190-year history as a perfume maker. Dior showcases its micro-nutritive lotion Dior Prestige in a refined boutique setting. Sisley, La Mer, and Clé de Peau Beauté curate their ranges in elegant environments befitting of high-end skincare, color and fragrance products.


Beauty, Retail