Debenhams opens doors to new Watford store at intu centre


Debenhams has opened the the doors on its latest store – Debenhams Watford – as it continues to deliver the retailer’s strategy to make shopping easy, sociable and fun.

The brand new 86,000sq ft three-storey shopping destination will be opened by celebrity designer at Debenhams, Julien Macdonald OBE alongside Watford local hero, Megan Bowyer.  The store, which is the vision of CEO Sergio Bucher, is modern, easy to navigate and places shoppers at the forefront by providing an engaging space to shop, dine and relax.

Housing an exclusive mix of designer, own label and international branded fashion and home ranges alongside and food establishments including inhouse offer, Loaf & Bloom and Costa Coffee, Debenhams Watford is the first in the country to feature the new redesigned Beauty Hall. The Hall, which was designed by Checkland Kindleysides, occupies 15% of the store and is an interactive space where customers can browse, discover and experiment with products from established beauty houses and breakthrough companies. Featuring flexible zoned areas such as the Hair Lab, Mini Bar and the Beauty Club House, the new hall also launches 24 new skin, make-up, men’s and haircare brands to the department.

Brands including Sand & Sky, Ouai, Bean Body, Filorga, La Bruket, Ciate, House 99 and Bumble & bumble* are all set to join established brands to offer customers the choice of up and coming innovative brands alongside a beauty bar powered by blow LTD. and Benefit brow bar.

The Watford store design builds on the successes of Debenhams’ Stevenage store which opened last year with a reduced product offering, flexible fixturing grouped by fashion genre and services including free bra fit service, free personal shopping service, travel money and free Wifi.

Sergio Bucher, CEO of Debenhams, says: “Our new Watford store reflects the changes that we are implementing as part of the Debenhams Redesigned strategy.  Product enhancements sit alongside a store design that is easier to navigate and cheaper to operate. With our Beauty Hall of the Future, we are responding to the way that customers say that they want to shop as well as offering a compelling food offer and choice of beauty treatments in order to offer a destination where shopping can be enjoyed with friends and family.”

David Fischel, intu chief executive, says: “We are pleased to welcome Debenhams to intu Watford’s multi-million-pound extension where it will capitalise on the strength of this new space and the benefits it will bring retailers and customers alike.”

The opening closely follows the launch of the Debenhams Beauty Club Community. The online and mobile site, which is the UK’s first beauty social platform, puts customers’ front and centre in the conversation on beauty.  Created on platforms optimised for desktop and mobile, Beauty Club Community enables users to give and receive real time, peer-to-peer beauty advice, discuss the latest beauty topics and trends and build rewards and recognition for their contribution to the forum.

Debenhams is the first of 13 new stores to open within a 400,000sq ft extension to shopping and leisure destination intu Watford.