KKD's reputation as the department store design experts has been earned over the past 25 years. Here, we're sharing insights into 3 very different projects we're currently working on.


1 —
A new-build department store for House of Fraser in China.

2 —
A refurbishment of an existing department store in Beirut for ABC Achrafieh.

3 —
A strategic insights piece for Marks & Spencer in the UK, on the role of the flagship store of the future.



1 —

Creating a unique proposition that delivers the best of Britishness to the Chinese market.

House of Fraser, China


Sanpower is the new Chinese owner of British department store group, House of Fraser. We've been commissioned to create 3 department stores, totalling 531,111 sq ft of trading space in Chongqing, Xuzhou and Nanjing. Our brief was to create the quintessential British department store.


'Britishness' as a brand aesthetic has many facets, from classic brands (like Jaeger), quirky modern (like Paul Smith) to edgy urban (like Whistles). House of Fraser on the other hand is a modern contemporary British brand. We've captured the essence of House of Fraser (UK) but adapted it to suit its new Chinese target audience, in terms of architecture, store design, product offer, service levels offered and total brand experience. We created the facade architecture, the interior architecture, atrium principles, and designed individual departments, from fragrance to accessories, and women's and men's fashion,  to shoes and lingerie.

In addition, we've introduced exciting experiences in store, specifically adapted to appeal to the Chinese market, like a concierge service, a womenswear tea bar, a gentlemen's club, a roof garden with catwalk, a British food court that also incorporates Asian fusion cuisine. The Buy & Collect hall is inspired by the grandeur of old railway stations, whilst special VM points provides a Best of British edit. Technology is used throughout the store, not as a gimmick, but to enhance the shopping experience. The sports department caters for special events, with live sports screens showing Wimbledon for example, including a serving of strawberries & cream. The first store will open in Nanjing in 2016.


2 —

Redesigning an existing department store to give it  an 'ownable' identity and re-establish its fashion voice in the region.

ABC Beirut



ABC is a name that remains engraved in the hearts and minds of the Lebanese shopper. For over 70 years, ABC has provided customers with quality merchandise, professional service and a vibrant and eclectic shopping environment. Located in the heart of Beirut, ABC Achrafieh opened in 2003.


Our brief was to refresh the store in anticipation of new competitors to the market, and firmly establish ABC as market leader. The store lacked a strong ABC identity and ‘ownable’ interior and exterior architecture. KKD was appointed to redesign the store, review the brand mix, layout, flow, adjacencies and circulation, and create brand guidelines to set the standard and control the branded concessions in-store. 

Our design concept takes inspiration from ABC’s history of innovation. The city of Beirut has been described as “beautiful and ugly, pockmarked and damaged, and glamorous and exciting.” Our design language takes reference from this and our observations of Lebanese culture, the outgoing fashion of its people and the beautiful but politically scarred landscape.  

ABC is changing from being more of a classic brand to a business more representative of the latest trends and fashion labels. We are helping to reposition the department store to be a fashion leader, give it a strong fashion voice, and maintain its position as the number one choice in Lebanon for the style conscious consumer.


3 —

Strategic Insights

Marks & Spencer's Store of the Future


The role of the flagship is changing - from being just about the transaction to being an immersive experience of the brand. For M&S, we're doing a strategic piece of work on the role of the flagship of the future, how it relates to the online flagship and how this is likely to evolve in future years.


It covers the ultimate flagship experience through a series of principles, taking in the latest trends and insights. The output is a set of guiding principles to implement different levels of branded experiences across the store portfolio.

In Summary

We have designed over 30 department stores to date, from new builds to refurbishments, across Europe, Middle East and Asia. 

Ranging in size from 2,500 to 300,000 sq ft.

Expertise in adapting brands to suit local markets & customer taste.

We take a creative and strategic approach to department store design - we believe the one challenges and informs the other.

Our experience range from feasibility study, masterplanning, interior & graphic design, to wayfinding, brand allocation & implementation management.

Designing every department, from beauty, shoes and accessories, to men's, women's and children's fashion, restaurants, food courts & book shops.

Designing every aspect, from the facade and interior architecture, circulation, lighting, wayfinding, point of sale, graphics, fixtures & fittings and materials palettes, to in-store branded experiences.

If you'd like to discuss your department store design requirements or explore how we can potentially collaborate on your next project, please email lucy@kkd.co.uk – Thank you.