In a time when retail business is converting from physical to digital, it’s a rare feat to see an online company open a brick-and-mortar location, but for Kathy Kuo, however, the creation of an in-person storefront in Southampton is a dream come true and a welcome addition to her growing business.
Kathy Kuo Home has been providing customers with luxury home design and décor, from furniture to floor plans, exclusively online since its beginning. Over the course of the pandemic, as online shopping took off and the company experienced a huge growth in sales, the idea for a physical retail space became a logical next step. And with businesses beginning to reopen and customers eager to return to an in-person shopping experience, Kathy Kuo, the founder and CEO of Kathy Kuo Home, decided that there was no time like the present. Kuo announced in June that the company is set to open its first store this July in Southampton, in none other than a house-like storefront.
“It is incredibly serendipitous and fortuitous that our first home, as a home brand, is 30 Jobs Lane in Southampton,” says Kuo.
The space itself is 4,000 square feet, designed to be more like a home than a store. While the space will still carry the brand’s best-selling products including furniture, décor and lighting all for indoor and outdoor use, it will also serve as an introductory place for the Kathy Kuo Home upholstery line, and the Kathy Kuo Home Collection, featuring exclusive sofa and pillow
The location also plans to offer digital resources for a combined online and physical shopping experience. Customers can interact with key items on the floor while still having access to the entire product assortment online. But even with the services being offered, Kuo is determined that the space showcases the traits of a home.
“Southampton is such an intuitive fit for the flagship,” she says. “The space will immediately captivate and transcend customers into the warm and gorgeous possibilities of home, and immerse them into the unique curatorial services of the Kathy Kuo team.”
To help bring her vision to life, Kuo enlisted Melissa Gonzalez, an award-winning retail strategist and experiential designer, and her team at The Lionesque Group, an MG2 Company. Gonzalez has helped high-end brands build human connection in physical spaces for over a decade and is now helping Kuo to create a one-of-a-kind customer experience.
In addition to the services already offered, the company will also have an in-house interior design firm present at the new location along with an in-store designer resource center. Any clients, current or new, would be able to meet one-on-one with a designer and have exclusive access to a library of product swatches and samples. There will also be private seating areas to house client meetings. Private shopping hours are offered for any who want to experience the store independently due to COVID, and appointments can be made on the Kathy Kuo Home website.
The space will also be used for brand partnerships, immersive events and designer pop-ups for both the local community and visitors. While the store is designed to help customers improve their homes in real time, the ultimate goal is to create awareness around the brand while also connecting with customers and supporting local business.
For appointments and info, visit kathykuohome.com/southampton.