Lotte Department Store opens renovated Food Avenue

입력 2023. 12. 8. 14:54
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[Courtesy of Lotte Department Store]
South Korean department stores are looking to revitalize their food departments amid a prolonged weak consumer sentiment thanks to high prices and a sluggish economy. Their strategy is to lure customers by attracting popular restaurants and dessert shops to diversify sales whilst reducing reliance on luxury goods.

Lotte Department Store on Thursday reopened the Food Avenue after renovating the basement of its Incheon store. The store has significantly improved the quality of its products and services as well as attracting popular local restaurants. Insiders say that the department store has set a new path for its food center after more than two years of planning and seven months of renovation.

The food hall at Lotte Department Store Incheon has significantly expanded its space to 11,500 square meters, more than 2.6 times the average 4,300 square meters of a regular Lotte Department Store food center.

“The Incheon store is the only department store in Incheon and is a top-tier store with the largest share of VIP customers, so we saw that there is demand for a premium food store,” an official from the department store said. “We plan to renovate the food centers of each region’s major stores with the same concept.”

The Food Avenue features “Lépicerie,” a premium grocery store, and “L VINO,” a wine library, as well as a space for restaurants called “Gourmet Village.”

In Lépicerie, customers choose fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, and fish, which the staff will wash, clean, fry, grill, and package. As a premium grocery store, it also sells home-grown beef produced from a limited number of 450 cows a year.

L VINO brings together more than 2,000 wines priced between hundreds and tens of millions of won from around the world in a wine cellar organized by region, variety, and vintage.

Gourmet Village is home to 65 renowned food and beverage stores from Korea and abroad, with 22 of them, or a third of the total, opening for the first time in Incheon.

Lotte Department Store’s total food sales, including those from food and beverage and fresh food, increased 10 percent in the first 11 months of 2023 from the same period last year. Food sales have grown at a fast pace of 20 percent for two straight years in 2021 and 2022, while the department store business sales and operating profit declined by 2 percent and 31.8 percent respectively, in the third quarter of 2023.

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