SPANISH fashion brand Zara has opened its biggest store in the world and it’s like stepping into the future.

The textile giant’s flagship store opened its doors at the bottom end of the Gran Via in Madrid’s Plaza de España on April 8 to much anticipation and huge fanfare.

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The new store in Madrid’s Plaza de España. All photos: Inditex

Offering 7,700 square metres of retail space spread over four floors floodlit with natural light and gleaming white floors, it has the look of a modernist gallery but the innovation goes further than mere appearance.

Shoppers can avoid long queues for the changing rooms by reserving a slot online, clothes can be tried on virtually using the latest technology and forget those lengthy lines at the till.

A new system allows customers to scan clothes as they go, to pay online and exit through an alarmed self-check out point that smooths out the entire shopping process.

Those sticklers for tradition can still shop in the usual way, by perusing items on the rail, trying them on physically and paying at a till staffed by a human.

The store, which is the first grand opening since Marta Ortega took over as CEO of Intedex, also showcases new product lines including a lingerie section, cosmetics department and sporting line.

It is part of a wider commercial strategy that will see many of the high street shops closed across Spain and more emphasis placed on online sales.

Moreover, Inditex boasts that their flagship Zara store sets a new standard in sustainability using ‘some of the most advanced environmental eco-efficient systems and qualifies for the BREEAM seal, a European certificate for sustainable construction’.



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