There’s a new sports apparel store in town. On July 27th, Champs Sports opened their brand new, two-level Chicago flagship perfectly nestled on State Street. Behind the scenes of the stores’ strategic design? JLL’s own brand experience firm, Big Red Rooster.
Fitting to the name, the athletic apparel retailer was committed to giving customers a world class customer experience worthy of a Championship title. To deliver this experience, Big Red Rooster wanted the customer to feel as though they were walking into a sports stadium, which is where the “Champs Arena Concept” was born.
The experiences that made up the concept were strategically designed and focused around Champs’ target consumer. The natural industrial space of the location was combined with local Chicago accents to give the customer a place they could recognize and connect with. The strong community focus was evident in the local art that was produced by Chicago’s own Little Black Pearl and will be changed out regularly to keep the experience fresh. The “Wall of Champs” recognizes local athletes and gives them their own ceremony complete with their name engraved into a golden brick.
That’s not all. The new store has many other distinctive elements, including a grand entry that has a digitally activated central escalator that energizes the first level and draws shoppers up to the second. An upstairs space called “The Mez,” is a unique bonus spot where art, music, fashion and brand events can take place.
JLL also led project management efforts for the Champs Chicago flagship, making this a true holistic approach from design conception through to opening day.
Although given a tight timeline with many difficult components, the team was able to deliver the flagship store under budget by five percent and in time for the opening day event.
The newly elevated Champs’ brand doesn’t stop in the Windy City. Big Red Rooster is currently working on a second Champs flagship store to be located in Times Square.