HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
What have you made lately? Get great advice
TELL US

High end retailers latest attempt at getting customers to spend more money and time......(As seen on CNBC!!)

jrvedivici Dec 6, 2013 10:55 AM

As a sort of follow up to my Unintended Consequences thread on this board here is the following food related segment I just watched. High end retailers such as Nordstrom and Saks have had Cafe's in their stores for a little while now, however their latest plans are to add booze into the mix. Nordstrom, Saks and American Outfitters are experimenting with serving alcohol in their stores.

The thought process is obviously a buzzed shopper is a happier shopper and with the libations will come higher spending than normal. Also, for the married couples keeping the husband happy and occupied in the bar/lounge will give the wife more time to shop till she (or he) drops.

As I said in my other thread, I just might have to go shopping and try this out!!

  1. goodhealthgourmet Dec 6, 2013 11:39 AM

    If they want to make me a happier shopper, alcohol isn't the answer. They need to turn off the godawful music they play, lower the heat, and give me a bottle of water. THEN I'll start spending!

    I'll be curious to see if these stores raise the prices on any of their merchandise to cover the increased liability insurance premiums they'll likely have to pay.

    1. p
      pine time Dec 6, 2013 12:09 PM

      Used to love the Nordie's Cafe, but haven't been in ages. A glass of wine as a shopping break might bright me back in. Plus, saw at our mall that a new Wine Bar kiosk is going in--surprised it isn't already up and running for the holiday season. A few moms with kids in tow that I saw surely could use a glass of wine!

      1. Ttrockwood Dec 6, 2013 04:36 PM

        Not so new in nyc.... Macy's in hearald square nyc has a champagne/wine bar in the remodeled shoe section, and the cafes at bloomingdales, barney's and bergdorf's all serve alchohol as well....

        1. bagelman01 Dec 6, 2013 05:44 PM

          I grew up in the retail business. Dad owned 15 clothing stores. I later owned 3. We didn't have cafes or wine bars.
          But what we did have was a fully stocked bar/fridge in the manager's office of each location.
          Bored husbands/boyfriends were often invited to the office to drink while the women shopped/tried on clothing.
          After 5PM wine spritzers or champagne were served in the ladies shoe department.
          Holiday time, platters of cakes, cookies, hot/cold punch (spiked and virgin) were set out for shoppers. Since we didn't sell the alcohol no license was needed. In those days we also wrapped all gifts and delivered them to the customer's homes for free. It was a much more refined and enjoyable time for shopping......................

          1. Veggo Dec 6, 2013 05:56 PM

            Jr, booze has been a lubricant at auctions, for charity and for profit, for as long as I have been alive. Wine at art galleries, more recently, as in 25 years.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Veggo
              jrvedivici Dec 7, 2013 07:50 AM

              Hahaha you should see my Tarkay collection from the daily art auction on the cruise during my honeymoon!

              1. re: jrvedivici
                Veggo Dec 7, 2013 07:59 AM

                Reminds me of sobering up on a few Sunday mornings, hoping the phone wouldn't ring with the good (?) news that I submitted a winning bid in the silent auction sometime after midnight just before I went home loaded.

                1. re: jrvedivici
                  bagelman01 Dec 7, 2013 08:06 AM

                  see you one Tarkay and raise your 12 more, including three nudes and throw in 3 Alexander Chens and a Le Kniff..........

                  4 bottles of wine later

              2. k
                kitchengardengal Dec 6, 2013 05:57 PM

                I grew up going to department store restaurants. The Walnut Room at Marshall Field's (now Macy's) has been there forever. I could swear that you could always get a glass of beer or wine along with your quiche or chicken pot pie.

                1. mamachef Dec 6, 2013 07:43 PM

                  If I like the store and can handle the crowds, I'm going in. If I don't like the store, there's no amount of alcohol that could entice me. And I don't see that it would enhance the mall experience either. That being said, though: I know of several high-end retail establishment which offer refreshments of an adult nature to shoppers and their companions.

                  1. sandiasingh Dec 7, 2013 07:40 AM

                    When I go shopping, I'm usually looking for something specific so if I had a glass of wine I would probably just end up browsing and wasting my time. I don't think it's a good combination from a marketing viewpoint, and the issue of insurance is pretty substantial.

                    My biggest problem with this idea is that I don't like shopping for clothing in a store permeated with food smells. I hate going into a boutique or clothing store when someone has just heated up their jambalaya in the micro. It's a real turn off for me to buy any clothing from there. I've been to some of the large dept store "cafes" and they are usually quite separate from the soft goods area but the food is usually pretty bad.

                    If retailers are getting so desperate they have to "medicate" their shoppers, that's pretty bad.

                    1. b
                      blackpointyboots Dec 7, 2013 03:59 PM

                      Dayton's (Mpls) now Macy's (sobs) used to have a bar upstairs somewhere in the general vicinity of the tea room. It was very 1940's from what I remember of it. It still existed in the 1980's when I went there for bridesmaids fittings. We had to help one of the bridesmaids make it through her fitting after having a few too many.

                      Booze is actually going to probably make me shop less. I do appreciate that Nordstrom has a cafe and decent bathrooms. Soo much better than what passes for acceptable in the mall itself.

                      Show Hidden Posts