The flagship branch of The Entertainer recently re-opened to reveal a fresh new look
The Entertainer, the UK based chain of shopping centre based toy shops, recently re-opened its flagship store in the Westfield at Shepherd’s Bush. After being closed for three months to complete a refurbishment, expectations were high.
Since opening nine years ago, the store has suffered some wear and tear, so the new look store certainly looks fresher than it did before closing for the refurb. Attending shortly after it has re-opened meant that there was a certain buzz in the air, with the Entertainer’s mascot on hand to pose for photos.
Some of the changes are practical – as a very busy store, it can at times be difficult to get in and out of, which has been alleviated by new, wider doors and a less cluttered entrance. The checkouts are also easier to get to for buggies and wheelchair users, ensuring that the shopping experience is accessible to as many people as possible.
Technology plays a part in the new look store, with digital screens replacing the traditional window displays. Inside the store, digital games are projected on the floor using technology that is often seen in shopping centres and theme parks. The Launch Pad, decorated by some colourful balloon decorations, is a place for children to play games on tablets.
Interactivity continues throughout the shop, with a few areas set up for staff to demonstrate products. A Magic Mirror experience allows guests to take fun pictures wearing virtual outfits and have them sent by e-mail. One wall features a button marked ‘do not press’, offering a dose of child friendly humour.
One of the benefits to the new store is that each section has a clear focus, with its name suspended from the ceiling – a big frustration on a busy weekend can be navigating a shop, so this is a very welcome improvement. It will be important for the store to continues to stock these areas correctly, and not let them drift into just suggestions.
For LEGO fans specifically, little has changed – the section for the beloved brand still occupies a prominent wall near the checkouts, with a reasonable range available.
Much of the new store is an improvement, looking brighter and fresher than it has for a while. Little interactive touches and fun displays are great and the balloon decorations are excellent. Whether the technological aspects can remain working while being used by little fingers on a daily basis is another question, as when these things cease to function and remain in place they tend to look rather unsightly.
With other branches currently in the process of being renovated, and The Entertainer having enjoyed a sales increase during 2017, the specialist retailer has every reason to keep investing in enhancing the in-store experience.