By Helen Siwak
Canada's largest location for French cosmetics retailer Sephora has opened on Vancouver's Robson Street. The two-level store is now considered to be the retailer's Canadian flagship. It features several Canadian exclusives, as well as a first in the world for Sephora - a unique skin care studio concept.
Located at 1045 Robson Street, Vancouver's Sephora flagship measures about 9,500 square feet, including about 8,600 square feet of retail space. Sephora's Pacific Centre location, as a comparison, measures 5,935 square feet.
The world's first VIP Rouge studio, located on the store's 2nd floor mezzanine, allows 'Sephora Beauty Insider' Rouge clients free access to beauty and skin care studio services in a separate, private space.
Sephora Robson Street features more than 200 colour, skincare, fragrance and haircare brands, including services only available at this store. Canadian brand exclusives include Chloe, D&G, Ole Henrickson, Marc Jacobs Beauty, Bare Minerals, Fresh, Kat Von D Beauty, Glamglow, Hourglass, Boscia, Atelier Cologne and more. First-to-market services include a cologne engraving machine, a Benefit Brow Bar, a Bumble and bumble Hair Studio, and Sephora Skincare studio.
At its media launch on Thursday, October 30, invitation-only guests were given a postcard of services and were encouraged to visit various store displays and have their cards punched. Upon departure all received a swag bag with full size products, samples and special coupons within a re-usable Sephora branded bag and a chic Vancouver-themed Sephora umbrella.
Canadian supermodel Coco Rocha was a surprise special guest. Rocha was in Vancouver to release her first book ‘The Study of Pose’ at Holt Renfrew on Granville Street. The book is an exploration into the human form that features 26 year old Rocha in 1000 unique poses shot by photographer Steven Sebring.
"We are very excited for the official opening of Sephora - it has been long awaited. The store itself is beautiful and well thought out. It will be a spectacular addition to the street," said Teri Smith, Executive Director of the Robson Street Business Association, a week prior to the store's opening.
Sephora's first Canadian location opened in 2004 at the Toronto Eaton Centre. The original 5,200 square foot location was replaced in November of 2012, creating a store in excess of 8,900 square feet.
Sephora is a Paris-based chain of cosmetics stores. It was founded in 1970 and purchased by the LVMH conglomerate in 1997. It has locations worldwide and opened its first North American store in New York City in 1998. It carries over 100 brands as well as its own private label products and includes makeup, skincare, fragrance, hair care, bath and body products and hair and make-up tools.
Fashion insider Helen Siwak is the Vancouver based president and co-founder of eco-friendly luxury re-seller KitsilanoKittysCloset.com. KKC offers preloved classic designers such as Armani, Versace, and Dior to modern trendsetters such as Jeremy Scott, Kate Spade and Stella McCartney. She is a dynamic member of the fashion community working with top stylists and designers, contributor to numerous online fashion/lifestyle blogs, and an ardent advocate of eco-sustainability and animal rights.