It’s been a decade of luxury for DLF Emporio in the Capital. It could easily be called India’s leading destination for luxury as it boats of an enviable list of international brands, leading designers and exclusive jewllery and watch brands.
But that’s not all it’s known for; DLF Emporio is one of the most coveted platforms to host exclusive showcases, premier launches and couture events. It’s visited by the who’s who from across the country along with a number of high profile NRIs.
Besides the shopping, it is also a top spot amongst diners as it offers an array of dining options. It’s tough to get a table at Setz which has a loyal fan following and a dedicated list of diners. DLF Emporio hosted a variety of events and a shopping festival to commemorate the occasion. The 10th Anniversary Fashion Showcase featured some of India’s leading names on the runway like Gaurav Gupta, Kotwara, Niki Mahajan, Patine, Ranna Gill, Rina Dhaka, Rohit Bal, Shivan and Narresh, Shantanu and Nikhil, Shyamal and Bhumika, Suneet Varma, Surekha Jain,and Tarun Tahiliani.
It was not all fun and games and the DLF Foundation joined hands with Spread A Smile India for a worthy cause. The brand collaborated with Sangita Mehra, Founder, Spread a Smile India foundation, to provide a platform for the brighter future of young street children with immense potential and talent to showcase. The brand hosted an intimate exhibit of merchandise handcrafted by the young street children of the Spread a Smile India Foundation at Cha Shi for which the proceeds were shared for charity for the well-being and betterment of the street children. A few of India's leading couturiers housed at DLF Emporio; Tarun Tahiliani, Gaurav Gupta, Rohit Bal, Malini Ramani and Ranna Gill too, contributed to Sangita Mehra’s, Spread a Smile India Foundation as they dressed some of their muses for an exquisite flash mob, fashion showcase in support of the noble cause.
Purnima Sheth from The House of Rose who has its exclusive store in the mall states, “Congratulations DLF Emporio! One of the most luxurious and best malls in Asia. I would say there is none other than them in the whole of Asia and we are very very happy to be associated with Emporio right from the beginning, since 10 years ago. We are one of the oldest brands at Emporio and have thoroughly enjoyed the journey...” India’s leading designers have a long association with the mall and were happy to be part of the celebrations.
Designer Raghavendra Rathore states, “Wishing Emporio a very happy 10 years of luxury shopping and hope to be a part of their journey going forward. Best of luck!” while Anita Dongre adds, “Congratulations to Team Emporio on turning 10. It is truly India's finest shopping hub and here's to many many more years of success!” FC spoke to Ms. Dinaz Madhukar, Executive Vice President, DLF Luxury Retail & Hospitality on what it takes to be the premier luxury destination of the country
FC: How has DLF Emporio managed to retain its position as the number one luxury destination in the country?
DN: When we launched DLF Emporio in August 2008, little did we realise that DLF Luxury Retail would be setting benchmarks in the Indian luxury retail industry. Our ask as an industry forerunner was therefore to deliver a superlative and ‘never-before’, luxury experience for our guests. The intent was to showcase in India, a luxury proposition which was in keeping with global luxury formats.
Today, DLF Emporio is synonymous with Luxury and continues to drive disruptions across the sector.
The key to build a robust brand and continue to maintain industry leadership lies in ensuring a precise positioning which is clearly and consistently communicated across partners and audiences. The positioning manifests itself in pivotal elements like decadent and unique luxury experiences.
The second imperative, of course is the ambience and customer service offered by the brand. As a front runner in the luxury space we are committed to showcase the best of Indian and global luxury brands all under one roof where the retail experiences converge with hospitality and customer services that truly delight our guests. The intent is to elevate the guest experiences as soon as they set-foot into DLF Emporio.
The third and the strongest link that has kept us a league above the rest, is a vigorous marketing calendar which runs analogous, to support the aggressive marketing pushes from our retailers. Our marketing initiatives ensure that we continue to directcustomers to their choicest brands and products. All our annual event properties are focused to provide guests a truly immersive brand experience, which keeps them coming back for more. Right from The DLF Emporio Couture Weddings to the DLF Emporio Luxury Shopping Festival, we have aimed at giving back to our guests, in both tangible and intangible ways.
Most importantly, we have been able to use our learnings and experiences in keeping with international trends. We are agile enough to adapt to and adopt the changes in the ever-transient luxury environment. All our guests at DLF Emporio are offered the most au-courant global fashion and product trends.
At DLF Emporio we are very conscious of the need to hit the refresh button occasionally, which keeps the mall re-inventing itself with the addition of newer brands and fresher product portfolios for the guests to experience and choose from. It is an amalgamation of all these above-mentioned factors that helps DLF Emporio maintain a leadership position, year on year.
FC: A combination of events, soirées, and promotions along with shopping —is that the model which has worked in Emporio’s favour. What is the secret behind its success?
DM: DLF Emporio and The Chanakya are clearly beyond just shopping. When we envision our luxury portfolios and projects, we usually think out of the circle. The luxury environment has always been immersive and experience centric, so it’s not just the events or the soirees that are a draw for the guests, but it is the rarity and the exclusivity of these experientials, that alludes to our loyalists.
DLF Emporio and The Chanakya today stand out as, ‘Luxury Destinations’ for our guests. These properties have had a transformation lifestyle impact, these are places to be seen at, places to dine at and perfect spaces to commune with like-minded crowds.
We have intentionally tried to create certain sticky zones for our guests with the finest of dining spaces ensconced within a luxury environment. Be it a SETZ, ChaShi, MKT, Café E, Café C or NOI, every gastronomical space is crafted to heighten guest experientials, in keeping with their myriad moods.
FC: Tell us a little about your association with DLF Emporio and how your vision for the brand has made it a leader in the industry
DM: When DLF Emporio started operations in Delhi in the year 2008, there was no antecedence on how to do it right. No other real estate brand in India had forayed into the luxury terrain. For DLF Emporio, therefore, there was neither an example nor a benchmark; however, ten years of successful operations is a huge brand milestone and validates our success. DLF Emporio is a case study for the luxury retail industry, across India.
Our vision for DLF Emporio comprised a unique, experientially driven luxury retail format, which was both exemplary and future forward. The idea was to give the Indian customers something that surpassed all their expectations.
I think the fact that not only have we retained but gained new brand loyalists across India, year on year, is proof enough on the magnitude of the brand’s success. The Chanakya has also been met with an over exuberant response, which is a steady validator that the DLF Luxury portfolio continues to delight guests with its future forward services and its dynamic Indian and global product bouquet.
FC: What are the factors that go into creating and maintaining a luxury destination as DLF Emporio and to keep it ahead of the rest?
DM: The success of every business depends on understanding the latentneeds and wants of the customers, while pre-empting and adapting to the change in dynamics of the hugely agile market space.
The reason that we have been able to hold true to our market leadership credentials is the fact that we have had a very keen eye on global luxury trends and the dynamism to adopt the quintessential new changes.
We have also been assiduous, in bringing the best and the freshest new global luxury brands into India, to continually re-invigorate guest experiences. All this while we have worked closely with our legacy luxury brands to ensure strong guest and brand associations.
I think the biggest reason for us to have maintained our lead is our commitment to offer services that are very unique to an Indian luxury environment. We have been able to strike the perfect balance between innovation and services, which has helped us delight our guest mix and build a bastion of our loyal patrons, across India.
FC: Any expansion plans at DLF?
DM: After the introduction DLF Emporio a decade ago, the brand recently introduced a younger and a chicer, curated luxury format—The Chanakya.
At DLF, we have always followed a diligent and curatedpath to luxury, that is true for any new launches or projects that we have chosen to undertake. The Chanakya is a project that has come to life after a lot of savvy research and learnings based from our own experiences. The property is a special project for us given its distinct design-story and the legacy which comes with The Chanakya catchment.
Future forward, we will follow the same route to plan our next luxury project, which will be both deliberate and meticulous in execution. We firmly believe that luxury is never a hurried experience and the more bespoke the project, the more time one needs to mold it into a perfect curation.