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credit: umdasch
credit: umdasch

Harrods Holiday & Occasion Rooms: A Testament to Excellence with umdasch The Store Makers

In December 2023, London’s luxury department store, Harrods, unveiled two new womenswear rooms dedicated to occasionwear and swimwear, as part of its redevelopment project at its Knightsbridge home. umdasch The Store Makers was entrusted with bringing Harrods’ vision to life – implementing the shopfitting based on a concept by David Collins Studio. The result sets the stage for an ideal shopping experience tailored to special occasions.

At Harrods, excellence is not just a standard; it’s an expectation. When it came to revamping the Holiday & Occasion area, umdasch’s comprehensive services covered everything from initial engineering drawings to final installation, ensuring that every detail met Harrods’ discerning standards. Located on the first floor of the store, the two spaces, part of the second phase of the womenswear redevelopment project, cover almost 10,000 square feet. The new holiday and swim space offers customers a 365-day-a-year experience to shop holiday options, including swimwear and resort apparel.It is home to four permanent shopfits and two long-term pop-up spaces. Meanwhile, the evening and occasion room features 38 partywear brands. According to Harrods, it has been designed to provide a “more elevated, current and modern environment,” and includes four extra-large fitting rooms and two luxurious VIP rooms, which customers can book to use while they shop.

From Drawings to Installation

The signature striped marble walkways and Tarahumara stone portals unveiled in Lingerie & Lounge continue, marking a newly defined customer journey. Holiday & Occasion is the definition of luxury with its distinctive colour and material palette such as stone, highly polished brass, stainless steel, and high-quality fabrics. Highly polished wood and MDF added a touch of sophistication, complemented by specialist glass.

The Store Makers meticulously crafted engineering drawings for all the furnishings, from luxurious sofas to elegant display units, designed to showcase the exquisite stock. They then coordinated the production of the furniture to bring the designs to life. The expert installation teams from umdasch ensured that each piece was seamlessly integrated into the space, managing the entire project with precision and professionalism.

Overcoming Challenges Through Careful Planning

The Store Makers’ success on this project stemmed from detailed planning and collaboration with all stakeholders from the outset. Close cooperation between design engineers and factory teams ensured that design intent was perfectly translated into practical execution. Through extensive sampling and practice, umdasch achieved impeccable finishes, while careful planning with the installation teams facilitated smooth on-site assembly.

“Navigating tight timelines was a significant hurdle, compounded by the need to balance design aesthetics with practicality,” says Stephen Champion, Project Manager at umdasch UK, describing the challenges. “We encountered stability issues with certain units, such as rails and console table legs, which required innovative solutions from our value engineering teams. Achieving the desired finishes, particularly for unique pieces such as highly polished black piano finish console tables, was another major challenge. Logistical complexities and the coordination of different fabrics for the soft furnishings added layers of difficulty.”

Realizing Harrods’ Vision

“What sets this signature area apart is its uncompromising dedication to quality and the ‘wow’ factor it exudes. Each unit embodies the essence of luxury, perfectly aligned with the premium products it showcases for special occasions,” says Stephen Champion proudly of the project. With the Holiday & Occasion area at Harrods, umdasch has once again demonstrated its unwavering commitment to excellence and its ability to exceed even the most demanding expectations. Harrods’ designers have hailed it as a benchmark in project delivery, which is the highest praise the Store Makers can receive: “If the client is happy, we are happy. It is as simple as that. In this case, the result speaks for itself.”

umdasch and Harrods: A Long-Standing Partnership

As part of a ten-year refurbishment project, Harrods is renewing and modernising key elements of its flagship store to create modern retail spaces that also exude timeless charm. As an experienced partner in shopfitting, umdasch is accompanying this unique transformation and revising the ‘signature areas’. This process began with the successful refurbishment of Harrods Roastery & Bake Hall in 2017. umdasch has since been commissioned for numerous other projects, including impressive areas such as the Dining Hall and the Moët & Chandon Champagne Bar in the Beauty Halls.


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