July 14 2021  |  Airlines & Airports

QDF celebrates 21st anniversary by investing in retail, dining at HIA

By Wendy Morley

Qatar Duty Free has announced the unveiling of an enhanced portfolio of 21 new shopping and dining outlets in celebration of its 21st anniversary.

The "21 in 21" project will focus on embracing a range of tastes and budgets, elevating the existing award-winning duty free experience and making HIA a premier global destination for international air travellers.

A stunning new P&C store will include the first Christian Louboutin boutique, making QDF the first travel retailer in the world to provide Christian Louboutin products

The new stores will gradually open in coming months. They will be in both departures and arrivals, and the offer will include global brands along with several convenience and travel-essential stores, including a Big Value. The enhanced dining offer will offer culinary delights to enhance between-flight shopping.

The new shopping experience at HIA, called Vialle di Lusso, will incorporate luxury outlets such as Armani and Chloe with an unrivalled selection of ready-to-wear fashion items and accessories. QDF will debut the very first Adidas airport store along with Q-Denim — a multi-brand men’s denim store — and the Qatari fashion brand Kashkha.

As part of “21 in 21,” QDF will launch the first Valentino airport boutique in the Middle East, and will also debut stand-alone stores for luxury brands Emilio Pucci, Fendi and Jimmy Choo.

The luxurious feel of the Vialle di Lusso will be sustained with Emporio Armani Ristorante and Caffè, adding more glamour. QDF will be the first travel retailer in the world to house the Emporio Armani Ristorante and Caffè.

For those seeking different dining experiences, there will be grab-and-go eateries, a range of dine-in outlets, and fine-dining concepts for those with more time.

In April, Qatar Airways signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for a Joint Venture with HMSHost International, part of Autogrill Group, the largest food and beverage operator at high traffic locations globally.

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, H.E. Mr. Akbar Al Baker, said: “We aim to offer an unrivalled retail and dining experience in a unique environment for all our passengers travelling through HIA - the best airport in the Middle East and the third-best in the world – and introduce our customers to an enhanced Qatar Duty Free shopping experience.”

Engr. Badr Mohammed Al Meer, Chief Operating Officer at HIA, said: "The latest expansion of QDF’s retail portfolio is part of its joint effort with HIA to provide passengers with a diverse range of retail and culinary experiences. HIA’s expansive commercial space offers brands the opportunity to reach out to a truly global audience. We are always looking to diversify our offering to curate memorable retail experiences for all.”

Mr Thabet Musleh, Vice President, Operations, Qatar Duty Free, said: “In celebration of 21 years of award-winning accomplishments and delivering a five-star service to customers, this major investment marks the start of a new chapter in QDF's history and demonstrates our continuous commitment to providing a world-class duty free experience."

In October 2020, HIA and QDF were voted as "Best Airport Voted for by Millennials" and "Best Airport Retail Environment", respectively, by the Travel Retail Awards 2020.

REGION Gulf Africa

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