Fortnum & Mason has officially opened the doors to its new The Royal Exchange store in London, marking the retailer’s first new location that is not at a major travel terminal.
Aside from from its famous Piccadilly flagship, Fortnum & Mason has satellite stores at Heathrow airport and St Pancras International train station.
The heritage department store said its new location, its fourth overall and situated in the heart of the City, can be seen as a vote of confidence in London’s future as the UK prepares to leave the EU in March.
Fortnum & Mason’s new branch takes up 2368sq ft of retail space and offers customers an edit of products from its Piccadilly flagship, which sells upscale grocery as well as luxury beauty, homewares and fashion accessories.
Accompanying Fortnum & Mason’s new store is a dining and bar area in the central courtyard of the historic Royal Exchange.
The news comes as series of luxury retailers also open new stores around the City, an area of London that was once had a poor retail offering.
Fortnum & Mason chief executive Ewan Venters told The Times that the retailer decided to open there because it was “a gateway to the world”.
“Fortnum & Mason has been in business for 311 years and we are expressing our confidence that London remains one of the greatest cities in the world,” he told the newspaper.
“We are flag-waving from the City and trying to deliver a positive message in our own small way that the City remains a formidable force to be reckoned with throughout the world.”
Fortnum & Mason is owned by Wittington Investments, the same holding company that owns furniture retailer Heal’s and has a majority stake in Primark parent company AB Foods.
Fortnum & Mason’s chairwoman Kate Hobhouse is the sister of AB Foods chief executive George Weston.
Meanwhile, their uncle Galen Weston is the chairman and private owner of Selfridges.