The first half of this year was marked by the arrival of premium and luxury brands. Handpicked, a premium Italian men’s wear and accessories retailer opened in Prague’s Dlouhá třída, and Swiss RADO watches, and the luxury French fashion items of Zadig & Voltaire are newly available in the nearby Široká Street. The premium brand Eden Park is another French fashion seller that newly arrived in Czechia, opening their store in Prague’s Palladium shopping center. New premium brands in the country also include Germany’s sports fashion retailer Absolute Teamsport and Slovakia’s Kellys bicycles.
The world’s largest premium lingerie retailer, Victoria’s Secret is clearly the biggest name among this year’s newcomers to date, having opened its first store in Prague’s Westfield Chodov shopping center this May.
Jan Kotrbáček, Partner & Head of CEE Retail Agency team, Cushman & Wakefield: “For a long time, Victoria’s Secret was one of the most sought-after brands (along with Primark) that were unavailable to customers on the Czech market. The store in Prague’s Chodov enjoys great demand among shoppers thanks to its concept, good quality products, the strength of a global brand, and a highly elaborate marketing approach. The label is a love brand for a huge number of girls and women all over the world, who are generally the best and most worthwhile customers for the retail industry. The initial weeks of the Prague shop’s operation have shown clearly that both the goods and the concept are very popular in Czechia.”
“The retail market is mostly about innovation and new ideas, quality products, and a strong story”, adds Jan Kotrbáček. “For newly arriving, active and successful brands, these are the key drivers of their further growth and their ability to stay on the market in the long run. Czech customers are becoming increasingly sophisticated, requiring product quality and originality. This is conducive to the growth and expansion of luxury and premium brands: an abundance of them keeps arriving on the market and the established ones are thriving.”
We can look forward to the arrival of more new luxury brands in the latter half of this year. A globally famed fashion brand, Ralph Lauren will open its first store in the country in Prague’s Pařížská Street, having previously marketed only its more affordable ranges under the Polo brand in the Fashion Arena Prague Outlet. The new shop at Pařížská 26 will also carry the top-of-the-shelf items in the brand’s offer. Another fashion brand, Jimmy Choo (which previously used a store close t the Old Town Square for a decade) is opening a dedicated new shop in an attractive prime location near the Vltava bank in the vicinity of the recently refurbished Fairmont Hotel, Miloš Forman Square and the Faculty of Law. The quality of the retail environment in this specific part of Pařížská is and will continue changing and improving radically. This is in particular the impact of the new schemes that will expand the supply of retail space in Pařížská by almost one-fifth: Prague’s most luxurious hotel the Fairmont Golden Prague, which is and is scheduled for reopening next year following a major refurbishment project, and the newly remodeled prime building at Pařížská 25.
The high street has been the destination of five newly arriving brands during the first half of this year. Four brands opened in shopping centers (in Prague and Hradec Králové), three in out-of-town streets, and one in a retail park in Ostrava. Apart from the US-based Victoria’s Secret, all the newly arriving brands are European; three come from Italy, two from France, and other countries are represented by one brand each.
F&B to prevail this year
Multiple new concepts are set to expand the Czech culinary market this year – to date, three brands have arrived, and more are yet to come. The Aperol Spritz Terrace opened on the premises of Galerie Mánes with a view of the Vltava river and Prague’s skyline. This is the largest terrace of the brand, which also runs this concept in Milan, Venice and London where it is included in the Eataly food hall.
Another Italian F&B arrival is Rossopomodoro, a Neapolitan pizzeria with its new branch in Prague. Tapping the Czech’s insatiable appetite for pizza is also the first Prague branch of the US-based Domino’s, which has been operating in Brno since 2019.
Foodies have a lot to look forward to in the second half of the year as well. The biggest new arrival will be the opening of the first branches of the American fast food Popeyes. The Bottega Prosecco Bar & Restaurant at Prague’s Václav Havel Airport, the Chuck & Frida street-food concept in the Port7 scheme in Holešovice, Slovakia’s Kaliforňan poke house in Brno, the Natoo healthy snack shop at Prague’s Main Train Station, and The Alley teas from Taiwan at Na Příkopě will certainly find their fans.
“Customer demand for meals served as part of attractive, original and quality concepts is growing all over the world, and this is the case in the Czech Republic as well, with new concepts continuously arriving and doing well”, comments Jan Kotrbáček. “That attracts more and more concepts and operators to the market. Experience is the name of the game these days and culinary experiences are no exception, and everything that is ‘in’, including restaurant concepts, is being shared on social media. As a result, the successful brands are usually those that offer solid quality products, top-notch service, fresh ideas and constant innovations.”