Apr 17, 2015
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Malpensa brings commercial offer upmarket

Apr 17, 2015

Following two years of construction and more than 300 million euros of investment, Malpensa has given itself a facelift. Opened in 1998 60 km north of Milan, the airport, which welcomes 6.5 million passengers per year, hasn’t succeeded in establishing itself as a major European hub. 

Now, it’s hoping to change that with the creation of "one of the most beautiful and largest travel retail areas in Europe," in the words of Pietro Modiano, president of Sea, the company that manages the Milanese airport.

Malpensa Airport’s new “luxury plaza“

Malpensa’s Terminal 1 has been completely overhauled in order to better show off its commercial offer. The departure area, in particular, has been reorganized around a new 140,000 square foot commercial platform that is accessible to passengers both inside and outside of the Schengen Area.

The new area consists of 46 retail commercial spaces, including a 21,500 square-foot duty-free area run by Dufry. The 86,000 square-foot luxury area "Piazza del Lusso" includes a dozen premium boutiques (Bulgari, Ermenegildo Zegna, Etro, Gucci and Hermès, Montblanc, Salvatore Ferragamo Tod's, Burberry and Moncler, Damiani). 

After the Piazza del Lusso, there’s the "Piazza del Gusto", a 23,700 square-foot area that features fashion brands with a more accessible luxury positioning  (Pinko, Furla, Boggi, Hugo Boss, Piquadro, Swatch, etc.).

Malpensa’s new duty-free space is brighter and more fluid

With this project, Malpensa brings the total retail surface area in Terminal 1’s departure zone to 250,000 ft² with 80 stores and 32 restaurants. Terminal 2, meanwhile, is reserved for the company Easyjet. 

"Everything has been designed to offer each brand a maximum degree of visibility, with a sinuous path, ad hoc lighting, and colors and décor to create a bright and comfortable space. We have also doubled the number of cashiers from 14 to 31 in order to halve wait times," said Giulio de Metrio, COO of Sea.

With restaurants and chic bars managed by a few of the biggest names in Italian cuisine, from chef Davide Oldani’s café to wine producer Ferrari, the new shopping area is all about excellence, and it might seem a bit cold with few places for travelers to take a seat… This is probably intentional, helping stores to attain revenues of 13,000 euros/m2 over the final months of 2014.

Instead of a food court, there are chic restaurants in Malpensa’s new Terminal 1

Average receipts for luxury purchases at Malpensa are 701 euros, ranking third in Milan after the two luxury thoroughfares via Montenapoleone (1,802 euros) and via della Spiga (1,030 euros), according to a survey conducted by the consulting firm Pambianco for Sea. Among luxury tourists doing their shopping at Malpensa, the Chinese topped the list with an average receipt of 778 euros, followed by Russian and American customers. 

"The initial results we’ve seen following the renovations to the mall are excellent. We quickly ran out of available spaces. We’ve received several further requests and now we're thinking about a way to create a larger commercial area,” said Giulio de Metrio.

€1 = $1.08/£0.72

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