The Irish Whiskey Collection, which opened in Dublin Airport’s Terminal 2 last November, has won the Speciality Concept of the Year award at the annual Frontier Awards in Cannes.
Dublin Airport Authority Retail Director Paul Neeson said winning the award was a significant endorsement for the company’s decision to invest in the Irish whiskey sector. “These are the Oscars of the international travel retail industry and winning a Frontier Award means we are world-beaters,” he said. “Our aim with the Irish Whiskey Collection was to completely revolutionise the sector and we have achieved that and also dramatically boosted our sales. This award is a further vindication of all our efforts.”
Since the Irish Whiskey Collection opened last year, sales of Irish whiskey at Dublin Airport have increased by 30%. The new store concept, which was devised by DAA’s in-house retail team, was created to stimulate demand for Irish whiskey and to showcase the category to both Irish and international travellers.
Given the success of the Irish Whiskey Collection, DAA is introducing new whiskey outlets in Terminal 1 at Dublin and also at Cork and Shannon Airports. DAA is also examining how best to bring to some of the overseas airport locations operated by its international airport retail business, ARI.
“Our goal is to be the best Irish whiskey shop in the world,” Neeson added. “This is a shrine to Irish whiskey, which is one of this country’s greatest exports. By providing a quality shop window for the Irish whiskey sector and by working in partnership with the trade, we will grow sales for the entire Irish whiskey industry.”
The Irish Whiskey Collection stocks more than 125 different products in an 80 sq m store that takes its design cue from the luxury cosmetics and perfumery sectors rather than the traditional airport liquor shop. The store is designed to meet the needs of the existing whiskey buyer and also draw in passengers who would not normally enter a whiskey shop. “We wanted to de-mystify the Irish whiskey category,” Neeson said.
The shop’s walls have a high black gloss lacquer finish, LCD screens are used to tell the Irish whiskey story, and the point of sale material carries clear information on each product and its history, as well as Irish Whiskey Collection store branding. From a design perspective, the centrepiece of the outlet is a black Tipperary Crystal chandelier, while museum-style display cases feature some of the premium limited edition whiskeys that are available.