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Exploring Fujifilm’s House of Photography store

Fujifilm has opened the doors on its new store concept, House of Photography.

Designed by Liberation Build, the new three-storey “experience centre” at 8-9 Long Acre Covent Garden opened to the public today (3 December), featuring selfie pods, free-to-use photography studios, workshops and an abundance of digital signage.

The photography brand chose London to showcase its new store concept which brings together the various parts of its business under one roof, inspiring professionals, enthusiasts and amateur photographers to get the most out of sharing and printing photos.

Fujifilm's House of Photography appeals to professionals, enthusiasts and amateurs alike
Fujifilm's House of Photography appeals to professionals, enthusiasts and amateurs alike

“The House of Photography is a world-first for Fujifilm, and has long been part of our vision for how consumers experience the brand,” said Theo Georghiades, Fujifilm House of Photography project leader.

“We are looking forward to providing a space for creative collaboration and photographic excellence that completely subverts the traditional approach to how consumers expect a photography store to look and feel. There is something here for everyone, from Fujifilm enthusiasts and industry professionals, to members of the general public whose photography is mainly smartphone-based. It is a complete sensory experience designed to inspire everyone to create amazing images and share them with the world.”

During a tour of the new store last week, Georghiades said it was not launched to compete with its retail partners, but to provide customers an experience, while showing its retailers how they can expand their own businesses.

The store features various areas dedicated to different parts of the Fujifilm brand, including a basement lounge for its club members, and a boutique for its GFX camera range. The GFX range has a starting price of £4,000 so this area of the store was designed similar to a high-end jewellery store to provide enthusiasts and professionals the space to learn about the products.

GFX is Fujifilm's high-end range of cameras and accessories
GFX is Fujifilm's high-end range of cameras and accessories

Meanwhile, amateur photographers can enjoy the Instax products in the Instant Playground space, while Fujifilm’s Wonder Photoshop concept (which Essential Retail covered on a trip to New York earlier this year) also features in the new store providing on-demand printing and an area to get creative with prints at a scrapbooking table.

Fujifilm's hero product Instax
Fujifilm's hero product Instax
The new store showcases serious photography seamlessly next to playful design
The new store showcases serious photography seamlessly next to playful design

Photo enthusiasts can also take advantage of the free-to-use photography studios and hire out various kit to try in-store before committing to purchase. There is also a gallery space currently showcasing an exclusive exhibition of photographs of David Bowie by photographer Markus Klinko, on display until the end of December. From January, the Gallery will feature an exhibition in partnership with WaterAid.

The gallery will regularly change to showcase famous photographers
The gallery will regularly change to showcase famous photographers

Digital signage features prominently throughout, with many interactive screens keeping customers informed of the latest workshops and seminars, or providing information and photographs of the store associates. There is also a large external interactive screen where shoppers can engage with the store from the pavement. This screen provides a Google Walk Through of the store which is expected to be popular when the shop is closed.

Georghiades said the store was designed to feel more like an experience centre, than a shop, with minimal cash desks. Store staff are provided with tablets to engage with customers and each area has its own stock room or live stock under glass cabinets. Card payment machines feature discreetly across the store, while signs offer tourists information on duty free purchases, which are provided by Planet and Worldpay.