After being closed for over a year, the former space of the Armani Cafe in Central has reopened, newly christened the Armani Bar. I’ve been here a few times already, and it’s just starting to catch on. Located in the heart of Central, in a building nearly dedicated to all things Armani (clothing stores, furniture shop, bookstore, flourist, etc.) the Armani Bar completes the flagship location. The Armani Bar address is 2/F, Chater House, 11 Chater Road in Central.
While top designer brands all have a presence in Hong Kong Island’s Central neighborhood, there is a new trend towards building mega-stores. Hong Kong is a wealthy market, however this growth is partially fueled by the influx of affluent tourists from Mainland China who can find products here currently unavailable in their home city. Gucci, keeping up with Armani and LV, is currently building a massive flagship location a few blocks away. With China as the largest growth market for luxury goods, brands are investing heavily in their presence.
The Armani Bar fits with the strategy of building a total lifestyle brand. Not only can it exude the attitude of the designer, but it can be a showcase for his wealth of creations. Everything from dishware to sofas can be showcased in a bar / restaurant location. It’s a kind of vertical integration for the brand.
The Armani Bar begins with a walk through a corridor with a series of booths on the left. It opens up to a large room with a small dining area on the right and a large bar taking up the center of the space. (Although primarily a bar and lounge, the Armani Bar offers a concise menu of Italian cuisine.) Surrounding the spacious bar are sofas. Towards the back there is a raised level with several more banks of couches that make up additional lounge space. A potential VIP room stands in the furthermost corner.