Research article

A retrenchment to core destination cities

The retrenchment to core destination cities seen last year will continue in 2019. Smaller, emerging and underserved destination cities will prove attractive as and when specific opportunities arise

The expected refocus on strategic and underrepresented markets materialised in 2018. Luxury brands opened new stores in 85 cities last year, down from the 118 cities seen in 2017. As a result total new openings globally declined 16% but largely at the expense of emerging luxury cities.

London regained its top spot accounting for 9.6% of all new luxury store openings globally with a 38% increase highlighting its resilience to Brexit uncertainty. Indeed, the depreciation of sterling in response to the Brexit result boosted international luxury retail spend in 2017, supporting requirements and subsequent new openings in 2018.

Hong Kong also benefitted from a return in Chinese visitor spend, with New York occupational demand supported by improving domestic conditions albeit compared to 2017 new store openings were down.

Bangkok and Dubai’s feature in the top five was largely boosted by increased store supply. For example, Bangkok saw the opening of the ICONSIAM mall that included a number of luxury stores. Dubai Mall’s Fashion Avenue extension also helped to propel the city into the top five.

core destinations

2018 top 5 global cities for new store openings
Savills Research | Note: excludes re-openings due to refurbishments, relocations and store-in-store openings. Includes airport and outlet stores.

Read the other articles within this publication below