Boots Opticians Professional Services operates a chain of ophthalmic and dispensing practices and is a subsidiary of Walgreens Boots Alliance and De Rigo Vision SpA. The company first began trading in the British optical retail market in 1983 in Nottingham, before opening practices in Peterborough, Leeds, Mansfield, Luton and Derby in 1984. Boots Opticians was formed in 1987, with the acquisition of Clement Clarke Ltd. and Curry & Paxton Ltd. A subsequent acquisition of Dolland & Aitchison greatly increased the portfolio. Boots Opticians is now one of the leading opticians in the UK, with over six hundred practices.
Lewis & Hickey have been working with Boots Opticians for over ten years and have become one of their key architectural consultants in designing and delivering their stores. We provide full architectural, project management and implementation services, combining the roles of three previously separate functions.
As with our main Boots UK workstreams, our teams have converted alternative high street stock into new opticians, worked on new concepts and undertaken hundreds of refurbishment initiatives.
Our works for new and converted stores requires the wholesale change of a building’s use to create a new Boots Optician’s. Lewis & Hickey design new shopfronts, space plan sales floors and design new back of house reconfigurations for staff facilities and logistics. Refit and refurbishment scheme work includes the total replacement of fittings in the sales areas, often meaning we have to reconfigure store layouts throughout to improve the customer journey. Consulting rooms are rearranged to meet modern requirements and branding will be updated to suit the latest requirements.
Today, Lewis & Hickey continue to work with for Boots Opticians helping them develop, design and deliver new and innovative stores across the whole of the UK.
Opened in October 2008, Westfield London represented an important and iconic investment in London’s retail experience. It has led to a new era in retail design and mixed use development and changed the face of shopping in the capital with a unique retail, dining and leisure experience just three miles from the heart of the City of London.
In 2016 Lewis & Hickey were appointed to carry out extensive refurbishment works to the existing White City centre. With a £600m expansion underway to create an additional 740,000 sq ft of high-quality retail a need was identified to enhance public areas to provide a seamless transition of user experience between the existing and new buildings. L&H were then further appointed to deliver the concept designs for public areas within the new expansion. Since the completion of the expansion and following the successful delivery of multiple work packages L&H have secured further work within both the Westfield London and Stratford Centres.
Investment in the Centre’s facilities has been critical to meet the evolving needs and expectations of both retailers and consumers. Lewis & Hickey work closely with Westfield to ensure aspirations are delivered to the highest standards.
Lewis & Hickey were briefed by Waitrose to provide proposals for two future initiatives relating to their nationwide development programme – Waitrose Convenience and Developers Shell projects.
For Waitrose Convenience, Lewis and Hickey were brought on board as project architects to roll out 4 trial stores before a nationwide rollout. Lessons learned from these initial stores were then applied to the roll out process.
The brief required the production of feasibility studies; compiled Design packs, inclusive of store planning proposals, for handover to the construction team; detailed design drawings, and full construction issue drawings. Site visits were scheduled to ensure compliance, and we attended review meetings post project to review KPI’s and discuss any possible amendments to future schemes.
On the Waitrose Small town Format (Developers Shell Project), we assisted in the development of the Building Standards (Web Portal) utilised by Waitrose and the specifications attached within to follow best practices and to ensure incremental efficiencies into the delivery process. This robust schedule enabled Waitrose to review the standards relative to programme and to enable us to comment at key milestones. Site visit were agreed 2 weeks prior to handover to ensure all shell works were in accordance with agreed standards. As-Built drawings, Warranties, air leakage test results & statutory approvals etc. were then produced and presented to the client as a complied document.
Boots The Chemist is one of the most highly regarded and trusted retail names in the UK, providing Health, Beauty and Pharmaceutical products and advice that aims to enhance personal wellbeing.
Lewis & Hickey’s partnership with Boots UK goes back over two decades, where we have provided a full range of architectural services. These have included architectural design and lead design co-ordination, interior and concept design, space planning, specification and model design-guide production, project management and health and safety principal designer services.
Our long and continued service has also seen Lewis & Hickey deliver a full range of formats and scheme types that Boots UK has undertaken over the last twenty years. Our teams have built new stores, converted existing high street stock, worked on new concepts and undertaken thousands of refurbishment initiatives.
The creation and conversion of new retail stores has been varied through either size, scale and location. Lewis & Hickey have worked on; shopping malls, out-of-town retail parks, airports, railway stations, motorway service stations and health centres.
Utilising our diverse design skills, concept delivery has led Boots UK and Lewis & Hickey to work on a variety of retail collaboration’s such as doctors’ surgeries, dentistry units and shop-in-shop concessions.
For retail renewals, our largest undertakings with Boots UK has been their refurbishment programmes, focusing on their core retail departments of heath, beauty and pharmacy. These alteration works are fast track and require specialist retail knowledge and skill to be able to deliver on time and on budget, to ensure their stores are fully operational to maximise sales.
Today, Lewis & Hickey continue to work alongside Boots UK in providing designs that enhance the customer experience, alongside well-tested delivery solutions for a wide range of development projects.
In 1964, Terence Conran founded Habitat Ltd, opening the first shop at 77 Fulham Road, London, and for over 40 years, the chain grew to over 70 stores throughout the UK and Europe.
Lewis & Hickey were briefed by Habitat to look at four specific areas of concern relating to the development and implementation of their latest stores. These were:
• Quality of store delivery to the client – delivering a better end product
• Review of services and finishes against alternatives on the market
• Interpretation and implementation of Habitat's brand and vision
• Adaptation of new design concept to both New Mall and Edge of Town environments
Co-ordinating both internal services – Architecture, Brand, Interiors, M&E Design and Safety Management – and external resources, we delivered the new format branches within challenging timescales. The stores, trading from approximately 15,000 sq. ft., focus on a design led environment that provides customers with domestic scale settings, guiding them to key promotions and services through simple strong signage and creating a clean, visually stimulating environment, enabling them to fully appreciate the breadth of Habitat's furnishings range.
In early 2004 Hugo Boss announced to the press that it would establish a permanent retail presence on the British High Street, in order to reinforce its Global brand identity. The first flagship store is located on London’s Sloane Square.
Due to both our high level of experience with Listed Buildings in the Sloane Square area, and successful feasibility studies, Lewis & Hickey were appointed as Architect and Project Manager for the scheme. The project involved the linking of Units 35-38 Sloane Square at both ground and basement levels and the evolution and implementation of a Hugo Boss designed concept. The challenges were many, particularly basement working in close proximity to the London Underground system, and the need to provide minimum disturbance to the prestigious residential properties above the retail space.
All members of the team worked cohesively to deliver a crisp and refreshing scheme that exploits the natural beauty of the building while sensitively introducing new vibrant elements. The successful realisation of this unique concept has resulted in its steady patronage by the discerning Sloane Square clientele. Hugo Boss Sloane Square received BCSC ‘Shop of the Year’ Award.
This landmark 105,000 sq. ft. ‘Store of the Future’ is the result of close co-operation between client and design team. Crisply detailed, light and airy in atmosphere, contemporary and exciting in design, this unique store makes an immediate impact. Whilst maintaining the brand look and feel, the design manages to introduce exciting new features to create a unified shopping experience.
Careful use of contemporary materials and fittings help draw customers inside, where a discrete in-store signage system assists navigation across the large floor plates. Greater emphasis on departmental segmentation gives an impression of ‘boutiques within shops’, particularly in the Food Hall, which through the organisation of variety, increases customer interest and actively assists product selection. To reduce the need for artificial lighting in the central atrium, a state of the art Helio-stat draws natural light down through the three floor levels.
Fashion, Food and Home are deployed over three light, bright floors in a prime location facing the atrium. An M&S Money suite offers a Bureau de Change, Tax Free Shopping desk and cash machines. The whole lower ground floor is devoted to Foods and Flowers, with a deli-style market including a cheese shop, bakery, wine boutique and contemporary flower shop.
The Eagle Centre, Derby is a major city centre re-development by Westfield, in partnership with Derby Cityscape, to provide a new retail core as part of the wider regeneration of Derby city centre.
The project involved the retention of 70% of the existing shopping centre. The extension doubled the size of the centre from over 50,000² to 106,000 m². As well as adding many new retailers, the extension also houses an 800-seat food court, a £30m twelve-screen Cinema de Lux and 2,000 additional car parking spaces.
Lewis & Hickey’s initial involvement stemmed from the provision of information to the University of Derby for the creation of a 3D model of the developing town centre. The model provided an on-screen journey through developments that have either been completed thus far, are under way, or are proposed as part of Derby Cityscape's master plan to attract £2bn of investment into the city centre.
The public mall spaces have been designed to emphasise the mall as ‘an activity centre and rental generator’ rather than a sterile backdrop to the retail units. This approach has been developed by Lewis & Hickey to create a visually interesting, commercially viable, customer-focused environment, by ensuring that the business model was fully understood, and the brief detailed to ensure that these values were reflected in the final design solution.
Vimal - the textiles brand of RIL, the largest private sector company in India - is set to meet growing demand for ready to wear, high end fashion in India, presented in a easy to navigate yet contemporary setting.
Lewis & Hickey were briefed to develop a one-stop-shop approach to the retail environment, creating a vision for the stores through its range of specialist services including not only architectural design but unique expertise in building retail environments and a commitment to the brand, the product, the customer and the surroundings. Our relationship with RIL began back in 2006 when a plan was approved to establish a retail business operating through three brands, offering distinct ranges of speciality clothing stores across India.
The re-branding exercise was carried out in a challenging 13-week period, followed by detailed design proposals for a 10-store pilot roll-out. With an initial expenditure of US$750million, the Vimal stores were designed to bring a new vision for menswear to the Indian high street in a convenient and engaging environment.
Lewis & Hickey have been delivering M&S Simply Food schemes for more than a decade. We were originally appointed directly by M&S taking the schemes from feasibility through to completion. Currently we predominantly carry out the schemes in partnership with a Design & Build contractor, whilst still maintaining direct appointments with M&S.
The majority of the stores follow a similar pattern. Feasibility studies are carried out by others. From that Lewis and Hickey, produce a scheme for M&S to sign off. This includes salesfloor and back of house staff and stock layouts and external signage proposals. Once signed off, we produce full detailed pack for construction. Due to the experienced team producing this information, this is all successfully managed and delivered within very tight timescales.
The stores are mainly within retail parks but are also stand alone projects and are nationwide from Cornwall to the north of Scotland. We successfully delivered M&S’s first ‘Learning Store’ in Sheffield as a direct appointment with M&S. Several of the sustainable elements taken from this award winning project are now being delivered into current stores.
We are currently involved with shell negotiations on a number of stores which will be followed up with full tender packs and delivery of schemes on site.
Lewis & Hickey also assist M&S in producing their design guides and standard details for all Simply Food stores, some of which are implemented within their mainline stores.
To View Marks & Spencer's Video on their first 'Learning Store', please click on link below.