New Concepts in Appliance Retail
Home retailer Pirch recently expanded into the New York appliance market with a SoHo showroom that opened just a few weeks back. The showroom is a new addition to a network of eight locations across the United States, where Pirch sells high-end kitchen appliances, bathroom appliances, and even outdoor appliances meant to create a unique environment for buyers’ homes.
According to Pirch, their new retail model makes it possible for consumers to test out their appliances before purchasing them, allowing homeowners a “test drive” experience with their potential appliances.
Many of these appliances have been crafted by sector leaders such as Sub-Zero, Kalamazoo and Wolf. The appliances can be used directly in the interactive showrooms.
Pirch SoHo will make a host of interactive spaces and kitchen areas in their 32,000 square foot showroom, which will cover three floors in a former ironworks building. Customers can interact directly with the appliances that interest them by entering into any of 30 Ikea-like interactive vignettes.
Because people don’t buy themselves new home appliances every day, making it possible for potential buyers to see how an appliance functions in real-time rather than from a video demonstration or guesswork will make the choice easier and better-informed. At least, that’s the objective of Pirch.
For example, if a consumer wants to update his or her bathroom, they can test up to 40 different showerheads of even book a slot for a privates team shower in Pirch’s “Sanctuary,” an area of the showroom that the retailer calls its in-store home spa.
Pirch has even hired chefs to be on-hand whenever the showroom is open. The chefs conduct live cooking demos at the Evo Mongolian Grill and in its test kitchens, Savor and Patio. Buyers can even take complimentary cooking classes in order to educate consumers not only on featured appliances, but on new recipes that they can try at home.
Pirch’s showroom shows how the company has taken into account the fact that affluent homeowners like to integrate technology when it comes to their appliances. Pirch SoHo accordingly offers something called its Connected Loft, where new technologies are shown off in interactive loft apartment settings.
“More than an appliance retailer, at Pirch we believe in bringing joy, romance and fun back into shopping,” explained Jim Stuart, chairman/co-founder of Pirch. “Meaningful experiences are more important than business transactions. At Pirch, we encourage our guests to touch, feel and try out state-of-the-art offerings- the very investment pieces that in the end, will shape memories in their homes.”
Pirch’s retail model sets the company apart from other more basic appliance retailers like Sears; and its certainly an upgrade. However, there is a market for these fancy experiences, and Pirch isn’t the only high-end appliance retailer to take note.
The home furnishings brand L’Objet recently partnered with Dorchester Collection’s the Dorchester in London to transform a private dining room in the Dorchester into Salon L’Objet. The ornately decorated room provided a way for potential buyers to experience the collection first hand.
For a unique and enjoyable shopping experience, affluent New Yorkers would certainly be encouraged to check out the Pirch Soho for themselves.