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Exclusive interview with Appelrath Cüpper


AppelrathCüpper is one of Germany’s best-loved fashion stores, with stores in cities across the nation. We go behind the scenes to discover the latest new product launches and exciting new services, as well as the company’s impressive portfolio of luxury fashion labels

Sally McIlhone ,

For the ultra-efficient German fashion customer, being able to purchase complete looks for each new season from top international brands under one roof is a must. AppelrathCüpper meets this need with aplomb and offers perfect style solutions for the time-poor modern woman in 13 stores across Germany as well as via its online shop, appelrath.com. It has become a go-to for the country’s most chic citizens.

History and focus
Purchasing manager Barbara Moers feels that AppelrathCüpper has become such a trusted brand among local and international customers largely because of its history and its focus. ‘AppelrathCüpper was founded in 1882,’ she says. ‘It started off as a women’s apparel store, and that is what it remains today.’ Its first store opened in Aachen, with a second subsequently launched in Cologne. Now the brand can be found in cities across Germany, including Hamburg and Kiel in the north, Frankfurt and Mannheim in the south, and Essen, Bonn and Dortmund in the west. To ensure maximum footfall, there are three stores in key shopping centres (at Hamburg Astertal, Karlsruhe and Main-Tanus-Zentrum near Frankfurt) and 10 on popular shopping streets.

The best brands
‘AppelrathCüpper has become the leading multi-label retailer of women’s fashion in the upper mainstream and premium segment,’ Moers says, proudly reciting a list of the top brands available in-store. These include Boss, Burberry, Marc Cain, Max Mara, Tommy Hilfiger and Gant. ‘The selection of brands is always based on customer requirements with regard to quality, fit and trendiness, which are vital for us.’

New developments
Late last year, AppelrathCüpper unveiled its new shoe concept, offering a range of premium brands such as AGL (Attilio Giusti Leombruni), Superga and Peter Kaiser. Customers can now also enjoy an AppelrathCüpper service that will dress them from head to toe. ‘In nine AppelrathCüpper stores we have integrated the new shoe concept with existing fashion departments,’ says Moers, adding that this development shows how AppelrathCüpper is dedicated to providing ‘the perfectly matching shoe for our premium customer’. Moers adds that ‘the concept also includes new furniture, which was specially designed for the new shoe area at AppelrathCüpper, creating a modern, emotive ambiance.’

Shoe heaven
For the Frankfurt store, the brand has gone one better, opening a complete shoe department in its boutique on the Zeil. The 300-square-metre space presents customers with everything from sneakers to high heels. It offers high-end labels such as AGL, DKNY and Furla, as well as the fun, eye-catching diffusion line Love Moschino and ever-popular items from Ugg. In addition it stocks well-crafted bags from German favourite Liebeskind.

In the Hamburg Mönckebergstrasse store, a wide range of premium footwear labels is stocked across three floors, from Luisa Cerano to Longchamp and Windsor. Now there is also a dedicated shoe area on the first floor, set next to the accessories department. It offers brands such as Kennel & Schmenger, Converse and Ugg.

The customer is king
One of the reasons AppelrathCüpper remains so popular is because its team has such a clear idea of its audience. When asked about the AppelrathCüpper woman, Moers replies that she is middle to upper class, focused on high-quality products, trendiness and a good fit. ‘She expects a high standard of service,’ Moers adds, ‘and expert advice while shopping our premium brands. She likes to buy fashionable items and basics at an attractive price-performance ratio. As a fan of AppelrathCüpper she is very loyal.’

Fashion finds
It’s easy to see why. On top of its well-curated selection of footwear and clothing, AppelrathCüpper also stocks its own accessories and cashmere lines along with exclusive items from Rena Marx. Moers says that the company prides itself on ‘a high standard in service and the outstanding expertise of our fashion advisers’, making it an ideal place to visit during a German shopping trip. ‘Our fashion advisers take on the role of a host,’ Moers explains, adding that they have extensive expertise and are extremely fashion conscious. But on top of an impressive sense of style, the AppelrathCüpper staff recognise the need to connect with customers and earn their trust in order to be able to recommend key new-season products. ‘Our customer assistance and advice relies on an interpersonal relationship, taking care of individual needs,’ Moers says.

This season’s stars
So what will AppelrathCüpper’s fashion advisers be recommending to their clients for the new season? ‘Key pieces for spring/summer 2017 are a trench coat for the start of the season, in navy or beige; a striped blouse for the preppy look; tops with cut-outs or off-the-shoulder details; cropped trousers in light colours; a handbag in silver or pink; and perfect matching sneakers in navy and white,’ says Moers.

With such a wealth of style knowledge gathered over 134 years, AppelrathCüpper is sure to impress even the most seasoned of customers. Take your time to explore the new shoe areas and craft your new-season wardrobe with the help of the in-store experts.

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