June 7 2022  |  Retailers

DFS marks 50 years of operations at SFO

By GTR Magazine Staff

Newly renovated DFS flagship stores and boutiques re-open at San Francisco International Airport, with an expansive selection of local favorites and international luxury brands; the celebratory event featured live music, poetry and wine, spirits & chocolate tastings

DFS Group hosted a stellar line-up of official representatives, VIP customers, and local celebrities on June 1 at a ceremony to unveil its newly renovated retail concepts and celebrate its 50th anniversary of operations at San Francisco International Airport (SFO). The event took place at the Terminal G concourse and kicked off 50 days of celebration to highlight exclusive products and gifts, as well as local discoveries from the Bay Area.

DFS Chairman and CEO Benjamin Vuchot officiated the store opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony that included SFO Director Ivar Satero, Director of San Francisco Mayor’s Office International Trade & Commerce Mark Chandler, and DFS SFO General Manager Karl Sutcliffe, all of whom addressed the audience of more than 100 people.

Guests were treated to Chandon sparkling wine; spirits tastings by Hanger One, Gold Bar Whiskey, Remy, and Hennessy Cognac; wine tastings from Silverado and Duckhorn; chocolate tastings by Tcho and See’s along with strawberries hand-dipped in Ghirardelli chocolate; and enjoyed hors d’oeuvres provided by Napa Farms. Entertainment featured live music, poetry, digital caricature portraits and body painting, all supplied by local vendors.

During recent months, to prepare for the return of international travelers to locations throughout the US, the retailer undertook a comprehensive renovation of its two flagship stores in SFO’s Terminal A and G concourses. Boutiques featuring luxury brands such as Gucci, Burberry, Hermès, and the world’s first in-airport Saint Laurent were re-modeled to world-class standards. The renovation was timed to coincide with DFS’ 50th anniversary of operations at SFO and the re-opening event was held as a celebration of both the airport and traveling customers in San Francisco and the Bay Area.

“Today marks another milestone in DFS’ history. Not only are we re-opening for our customers and unveiling our renovated retail concepts delivering a unique luxury experience and a sense of place, we are also celebrating 50 wonderful years at SFO.

“Our aim at DFS is to create destinations within destinations, and SFO is a perfect example of this ethos. We are honored to continue working with the SFO Airport team, with the office of the mayor, and with our brand partners, to ensure that SFO maintains its reputation as a world-class airport within a world-class travel destination,” says Vuchot.

The design of the new stores reflects the laid-back yet cosmopolitan essence of San Francisco, with a façade that features iron-painted International Orange (the color of the Golden Gate Bridge) and natural wood.

The physical enhancements are further augmented by new digital experiences including interactive digital wine tables, which allow customers to place a bottle on the table and learn about the brand and vintage via an on-screen display. DFS has also partnered with Inflyter, the duty free shopping app, enabling travelers to browse and buy duty free as soon as a flight booking has been made, alleviating the need to wait until the airport.

For more snaps of the celebration, see below:

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