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STORE SPACES

First Look: Primark opens ‘largest fashion retail store in the world’

BY Marianne Wilson

Value-focused, brick-and-mortar-only retailer Primark has opened a massive store dedicated to bargain-priced fast-fashion and beauty. It’s a one-of-a-kind destination — complete with a Disney-themed eatery.

Located in Birmingham, U.K., the five-floor, 160,100-sq.-ft. store, which has been recognized with a Guinness World Record as the largest fashion store in the world, aims to provide an immersive shopping experience. In addition to an array of clothing and accessories for men, women and children, the store boasts a large beauty studio, barbers and three dining experiences, including the Disney Café. Charging stations are located throughout the space, which has a high-energy vibe.

The Birmingham outpost boasts several exclusive in-store shops, including one devoted to Harry Potter. There is also a custom lab, where shoppers can personalize T-shirts and other goods.

Here are some other store highlights:

Beauty studio: The Duck and Dry salon offers essentials services, including the brand’s signature blow drys and braid bar, brows and lashes, as well as manicures and pedicures.

Duck and File Xpress offer a range of gel polishes, express manicures and pedicures, and even nail art. Brows and lashes can be preened by Duck and Pluck Express with services including threading, tinting and lash add-ons.

Barbers: Primark has collaborated with famed London barber Joe Mills to create his first standalone site outside of London.

Restaurants: The Mezz Café is located on the mezzanine floor, and offers coffees, frappes, and pastries. The Mezz Restaurant, located on the lower ground floor, has a menu that includes breakfast items, salads, hand-made stone-cooked pizzas, and more.

The first-floor Primarket Café serves a range of sandwiches, paninis, and desserts. Shoppers can even customize doughnuts in the spray bar, with icing, chocolate and sprinkles.

The Disney Café is located on the top level. To enter, customers walk through oversized mouse ears. There are also tables with interactive games and entertainment to keep little ones occupied throughout the meal.

Primark, which was founded in 1969 in Ireland, is owned by U.K. retail and consumer group Associated British Foods. The retailer entered the U.S. in 2015, in Boston. It currently has nine U.S. stores, with plans to open more.

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