Grand Optical has renovated its Parisian megastore on the Champs-Elysées, expanding it to 1,000 square meters on 2 floors, which makes it probably the largest optical store in Europe. Designed by Gérard Barrau, it will serve as a prototype for other superstores that Grand Optical's parent company, GrandVision, plans to open in the course of 2000 in Zurich and other big cities in Italy and Spain.
The Paris flagship features a new "Air New Light" section, dedicated to lightweight and invisible eyewear. Another highlight is the "Designer Gallery" on the upper floor, which features eyewear from an international roster of well-known fashion brands. A special new "progressive lens counter" is to be added by the end of January to the chain's legendary services, which include normal lenses produced in one hour or free delivery.
All the staff wear unisex uniforms, designed by Alain Mikli in pewter grey. Customers are offered coffee and tea while making their eyewear selections, adding to the ambience of graciousness and service. A "Grand'Advantage" card entitles customers to a 3-year warranty, a 10 percent discount on frames and the Grand Optical magazine.
Catering to both Parisian residents and tourists, the new Grand Optical store is expected to reach an annual turnover of 100 million French francs (e15m) within 3 years.