Taking ‘eyewear’ retailing a notch higher, Himalaya Optical , which is one of the biggest eyewear retailer in India has launched a new format—‘Eye Boutique’ which is much more classier and luxurious as a format and targets more discreet customers. In an exclusive conversation with IndiaRetailing.com, Sarat Binani, Himalaya Optical talks about the rationale behind adding an extension to his already established business.
Please tell us about your new format—Himalaya Eye Boutique?
The challenge was to defy the old rules and present something unique to the Kolkatans. Eye Boutique is an endeavor to bring in to the Indians an array of ‘brands with a difference’ under one roof. A few brands have transcended the conventional definition of the term luxury and refined style across generations. Each Boutique store is unique in its own way.
What was the rationale behind opening this new format?
Unfortunately, the market for luxury eyewears has not progressed much in India. The market was untapped and the famished souls did not have a destination to quench their thirst. In such a situation we thought of creating something different for the Indians and embarked upon our journey with Kolkata. The word “Boutique” itself implies a business that caters to a sophisticated clientele. Himalaya Eye Boutiques have been designed keeping in mind the desires of those who have a craving for luxury eyewears.
Locations where you have opened the new Boutique stores?
Presently, there are three Eye Boutiques in Kolkata; one is stationed at Camac Street the other one in Quest Mall and the third one at South City Mall.
What is the ideal location for this format of stores?
As we have already mentioned above this concept was conceived keeping in mind the desires of people having a fetish for luxury eyewear. We are looking at high street locations with a catchment area of the residences of HNIs e within 3kms range. We are also looking at high end luxury malls. A potential Boutique should be big with a wide façade. Parking lot should be present near the store. The minimum area should be 1000-1200 sq cm.
USP and how is it different from other Himalaya stores?
Indians diligently nurse the prejudice that luxury eyewears are either available abroad or in the shops at airport premises. We are here to break the long term prejudice, hence Brands with a difference is our USP. Our boutique stores have in store for you ultra premium brands Lindberg, Maybach, Chrome Hearts, Cartier, DITA and many other renowned ones.
The collection and ambience of Boutiques are absolutely different from normal Himalaya stores.
Price Point of products in this new format stores?
As Boutique falls under the category of luxury stores the products have been accordingly priced. The designer collection comes
with a price tag of Rs 15000 onwards.
Please tell us about its design aspect?
The challenge was to defy the old rules and present something unique to the Kolkatans. We have always believed in encouraging young and dynamic players hence we bestowed the job of designing the interiors to a young Delhi based company. On the other hand materials and craftsmanship have been taken care of by a renowned group of interior architects. Another intriguing point is the ambience of the store where one can see the usage of black, white, gray shades and the usage of wooden fixtures which have given them an elegant look. Each Boutique store is unique in its own way.
Will you franchise this model?
Presently, we do not have any plans of franchising this model.