by Stephen Garner

Streetwear and sneaker retailer Concepts will open a brand-new global flagship store in Boston this Saturday. Located at 18 Newbury Street, the 4,700 square foot store introduces new products, alongside brand and digital experiences covering three floors in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood.

The new flagship celebrates Concepts’ Boston roots and community while continuing to redefine the future of style and storytelling through streetwear and luxury. “This is a historic moment for Concepts, especially as we head into our 25th anniversary,” said Tarek Hassan, founder and CEO of Concepts. “This flagship store is more than just a retail space and with Boston being our home, we’re proud to further infuse our DNA into the city.”

Since its Boston founding in 1996 as one of the first retailers to blend the worlds of street, skate, and fashion, Concepts has since expanded internationally with stores in New York, Dubai, and Shanghai. As Concepts’ biggest retail expansion to-date, the new location speaks to a reimagined, conceptual brand experience.

“During this unprecedented time, now more than ever, we are proud to invest in a retail expression that elevates the space and our brand in a bold new way– we’ve always been risk-takers and we’ll bet on ourselves every time,” said Hassan. “We are committed to the power of brand expression and dynamic storytelling – nothing beats the in-person shopping experience and this opportunity has allowed us to perfect that, our product offering, and our customer service.”

Designed in partnership with Sid Lee, the multidisciplinary global creative agency, the space is a reimagination of the traditional retail model, taking the form of an art gallery, with the goal to drive social engagement and exploration. Built with materials inspired by nature, the marriage of zinc, concrete, and stone creates a modern yet comfortable environment. The visual experience is built to talk and connect with people, further driving the depth and breadth of brand and product storytelling Concepts is known for.

Connecting three separate floors with a unique expression of the brand, is a main staircase inspired by the Greek term ‘theatron,’ “a place of gathering for spectators.” The layout was designed to give users a complete journey experience – a path through the different environments, presenting different collections, all focused through the sense of discovery that an art gallery would elicit.

Taking the role of a center stage, the stairs welcome the community into the world of Concepts. In the heart of the store is a striking zinc cube, designed to cast light at different angles, creating an individualized sensory experience for each guest.

The ground floor and main entry space houses Concepts private label apparel and accessories, multi-brand footwear and apparel, and a headwear customization space. In the mezzanine space, consumers will find Concepts’ “Constant Change,” a dedicated area for rotating special projects and collaborations, as well as a DJ booth.

The top floor unveils the launch of VRSNL, a new women’s-focused luxury boutique from Concepts through the lens of streetwear. This is the first and only brick-and-mortar expression of the VRSNL brand, which soft-launched its e-commerce and social media presence in September 2020. Designed to inspire and meet the needs of its growing community, VRSNL will include a curated offering of Concepts private label, and streetwear and sportswear brands.

In addition, the upper level of the store houses the Concepts Cafe, a space that houses made-to-order food and beverage offerings for consumers as they experience the store.

Take a 3-D virtual walk-through here.