Classic Style for the Modern Shopper

By Anshey Bhatia • September 18, 2014

BRAND WE LOVE ANALYSIS

Club Monaco

What is Club Monaco?

Club Monaco is an international lifestyle brand prominently known for for their chic and contemporary men’s and women’s apparel. With over 65 locations in the United States, and upwards of 70 stores rapidly spreading across South Korea, Dubai, Indonesia, Sweden, Germany, and Taiwan, Club Monaco is now a major force on the international style market.

Why We Love Club Monaco

Club Monaco’s beautiful mix of classic black and white pieces with soft pastels, graphic prints, and impeccable tailoring is reason enough to love them, but here at Verbal+Visual we know that aesthetically perfection can often be innovated one step further. No longer content as a simple retailer, Club Monaco has begun transforming their stores into full-fledged lifestyle experiences. With last year’s renovation of their 5th Avenue flagship, the brand is taking their point of view far beyond the fabric. As a 2013 New York Post article described it:

“Entering the New York flagship Club Monaco in the Flatiron District feels more like hanging out in the clean, well-appointed home of your coolest, chicest friend than shopping in a store of any stripe.”

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From exclusive accessories collections to vintage home goods, these new Club Monaco stores are bushing the boundaries of retail, and finding inspiration at every turn. They’re even partnering with local vendors, bringing in Brooklyn-based coffee shop, Toby’s Estate, and legendary bookstore, The Strand, to co-inhabit the 5th avenue space.

Club Monaco in a Nutshell

Started in Toronto in 1985, Club Monaco’s blend of high-end luxury with mid-priced accessibility have coalesced over the past 30 years to create a successful, long-lasting brand. Founders Joe Mimran and Alfred Sung sold the company to Ralph Lauren Corporation in 1999, but Polo has mostly let them operate as an independent entity within the brand.

Secret to Success

Club Monaco’s lasting success is largely due to their ability to continuously update classic styles with on-point trends. Season after season they redefine modernity, while always staying true to their original quality and aesthetic. It’s said that Mimran and Sung started the company because they wanted the create the perfect white shirt—and luckily they never forgot that inspiration.

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Current Digital Presence

Club Monaco has gone through a complete digital reboot in the last couple of years, finally launching a U.S. e-commerce site in March of 2012. Besides shopping, the new site also highlights their “Culture Club,” which features art, fashion, music, travel and food that fit within their well crafted aesthetic. With over 260,000 Tumblr followers in just two years, supplemented by well populated Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter accounts, Club Monaco is making themselves known across the digital landscape.

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Areas for Improvement

Club Monaco is doing a fantastic job building out their online brand in a beautiful way that makes our web designers smile. But, at Verbal+Visual we never stop brainstorming, so here are some additional ideas to make the site even better:

+ Each new store is so unique that it would be great for site visitors to tour them all online. New Yorkers may love their city, but that doesn’t mean they’re not interested in checking out the London hub!

+ As retail partnerships grow, so do the in-store event opportunities. It would be great to go online and see city by city to see what events are happening that week.

+ Now that Club Monaco’s apparel is available worldwide, why not share styling tips from across the globe? Are boys in China wearing their Club Monaco Fall 2014 trousers with graphic t-shirts, while boys in Milan are wearing them with tailored shirts? Customers could submit their photos online, creating an online sharing platform exclusively on how to style Club Monaco items.

In Closing

Between relaunching their online presence, and redefining the definition of retail, Club Monaco has been hard at work the past few years, all while making sure their customers stay chic and modern. With all that innovation, we can’t wait to see what they come up with next!

Anshey Bhatia

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