DutchAmsterdam.nl — Hennes & Mauritz, the Swedish fashion chain that operates as H&M this Thursday will open what the company calls it’s Best Store Ever.
The flagship store is located at Dam Square, in a five-story building formerly that formerly housed offices for the ABN Amro bank.
The store covers 2600 square meters and offers departments for men, women, youth, children and — unique for Holland — household goods such as towels and linens: the so-called Home-concept.
The invitation-only opening party last Monday evening featured a fantastic lightshow on the building’s facade.
H&M Netherlands director Susan Krau expects that on busy days some 4.000 shoppers will visit the store.
The Dam square location is the 109th H&M store in the Netherlands and the tenth in Amsterdam. Worldwide the company has almost 2,200 stores in 37 countries and employs around 76,000 people. The new location employs 120 people.
In 2007 H&M competitor Esprit was selected from among seven interested parties to open a flagship store at the same location. It is not known why Esprit withdrew its plans.
Staircase and Basement
During the remodeling phase the owner of the building dug a huge basement — not far from the spot where giant drilling machines just months ago bored tunnels for the controversial North-South metro line.
Since the building is listed as a monument H&M did not have free reign in the redesigning process. Among other things the monumental staircase in the center of the building has been preserved.
Krau expects the clothing company to open additional stores in Amsterdam and throughout the Netherlands.
Three of H&M’s current Amsterdam locations are virtually around the corner: two in the Kalverstraat, of which one in the Kalvertoren shopping center, and one on Nieuwendijk.
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