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While temperatures have hit more than 40 degrees here in Dubai this week, those of us in town for the celebration of The Macallan’s new airport boutique have enjoyed something akin to a northern European season, at least for a few hours.
On Tuesday night, Edrington Global Travel Retail and retail partner Le Clos marked the opening (last weekend) of The Macallan Boutique at DXB, the world’s busiest international airport, with a stellar evening of Scottish food and culture at the Mandarin Oriental Jumeirah.
Hosted by Edrington Global Travel Retail Managing Director Suzy Smith and team, the cocktail and dinner that followed were inspired by woodland themes and the single malt brand’s Scottish heritage. It is one of a series of events this week in Dubai to mark the opening.
Importantly, for the fast-growing luxury spirits brand, it also marks the start of an international roll-out of The Macallan Boutiques, as Suzy Smith outlined to us in a recent interview.
“By creating our own standalone retail environments, we will be able to offer an experience which embodies the brand and enables a deeper level of engagement with our target consumers,” she told us in April. That drive has taken on new life with the first standalone store at DXB, Concourse B, which is already building its profile through the airport company’s own Time Out DXB media brand, where it is the latest cover story.
Importantly, The Macallan is not just taking its cues from the world of spirits for this venture. Instead, it is benchmarking against Chanel, Dior and the world of luxury beauty and fashion in how it presents the brand in travel retail. That, as Smith told us last night, is a “step change” in how the brand is merchandised, but one that fits neatly with its luxury credentials.
We’ll be touring the store shortly to assess how that aspiration has come to life, and we’ll bring you the full story later this week, including comment from Edrington, Le Clos and Dubai Airports.