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The North Face - Flagship Store, Stanford, USA

global 'progressive playground' concept roll-out

The North Face

Alongside leading outdoor brand, The North Face® we collected the learnings from a comprehensive test and learn program on both sides of the Atlantic and designed the findings into the new US flagship store, to be rolled out world wide. 

The Brief

Palo Alto, California is the latest edition in the global roll-out. This store developed The North Face’s “modernised outdoor” proposition and the corresponding new retail concept; “a progressive playground for explorers.” The concept was trialed in the Regent Street pilot store and all the insights culminated in this store design.

The Insight

The test and learn process directed how customers shop the space, how they navigate the different categories, and how they interpret the often complex, technical products on offer.

As a result, this next generation store experience is rich with texture and authentic materials, layered with contextual, sociable imagery of people exploring, and clearly zoned by category. The brand DNA has been elevated to the next level, with storytelling featuring global athletes complementing the instore expertise and a strong focus on localised community elements.

The Solution

‘Bringing the outdoors in’ is fundamental to the progressive playground concept. This has been encapsulated via the digital ‘sky windows’ in the ceiling which feature artistic, atmospheric content curated by The North Face® athlete, Renan Ozturk. The outdoor thematic is extended with texture and tactility seeded throughout the new store, for example at the heart of the space stands a reinvented, salvaged Redwood tree.

Hyper-local relevance highlights that the global brand can operate at a more individual level. The geographic location of the store has been moulded into aspects of the design, from the grid reference customers walk over on the threshold, to the laser-cut graphic of the topography of the local area as artwork. The fitting rooms reference the surrounding location through fixtures and furnishings, alongside inspirational quotes from local athletes.

The success of the local Regent Street community #NeverStopLondon has been dialled up in Stanford. The London trial demonstrated the potential social reach and positive influence of brand advocates. Stanford’s local community is evidently alive on chalkboards highlighting events, via an Instagram wall and through an active social presence, @TheNorthFace_SF.

The Results

Eli Petricka, Marketing Creative Director at The North Face®

“The 6,500 square-foot Palo Alto retail location has been designed for both our local and global community. It brings to life the latest iteration of the new brand concept, the ‘progressive playground’. We are excited by the test and learn findings we’ve invested into this project, results which Green Room have played a huge part in helping us uncover.”