Sophie Ryan

Sophie Ryan is an NZME. News Service reporter.

High-end footwear label to open flagship NZ store

A Camper store in Salamanca, Spain. Photo / Facebook
A Camper store in Salamanca, Spain. Photo / Facebook

Footwear label Camper is opening a flagship New Zealand store on Auckland's High Street in October, as the inner-city retail sector continues to grow.

The site on the corner of High St and Durham Lane will be transformed in to a Camper concept store with offices above.

Chief executive of Fibre Ltd, Mark Yaxley, who is behind the opening of Camper in New Zealand, said he believed the central city was the fashion destination of Auckland.

"We believe the city is the growth area for fashion," Mr Yaxley said.

"We think energy is coming right back in."

Camper Australia opened a store in Newmarket in 2007 to test the New Zealand market. The store was open for 18 months.

Mr Yaxley said High St was chosen over Newmarket for the new venture because of higher foot traffic.

The combination of foot traffic in the central city and the high-end fashion reputation of High St were the right mix for Camper.

"We think [the success of High St] goes in cycles. It can be really hot, then cool off, and right now it is probably somewhere in between."

He said while New Zealanders may not be familiar with the brand, other than as a sponsor for Team New Zealand, the store would be a destination for tourists.

Camper was known around the world for their concept stores, filled with artistic displays, Mr Yaxley said.

"We don't think there's anything like it in New Zealand. It's not been seen in New Zealand's retail landscape."

Chief Executive of the New Zealand Retailers Association Mark Johnston said Camper was "a really good fit for that end of town."

He said the new shop opening reflected growth of retail in the city centre.

"Economists are saying that consumer confidence is at record high and we can see that playing out with retailers big and small," he said.

The shop, previously a Veronika Maine store, will open about the third week of August, Mr Yaxley said, and will have a formal opening celebration in October.

Further stores in Wellington and Christchurch were possible, Mr Yaxley said.

- APNZ

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