Republished from NZRetail's December 2014 issue.
Situated in the central city − on the corner of Lichfield and Colombo St − the boutique brings the world of Nespresso to life, allowing visitors to discover the brand’s premium portioned coffee and be treated to exclusive, personalised customer service.
The move reflects the coffee company’s deliberate intention to be at the heart of Canterbury’s iconic shopping precinct as it forms part of the retail revival and rebuilding of Christchurch.
Guillaume Chesneau, country manager for Nespresso New Zealand said, “Ballantynes is an important landmark in Canterbury and we’re proud to be opening in the country’s most historic department store. The new boutique will provide the opportunity for club members and visitors to immerse themselves in the world of Nespresso in a convenient location.
The move also reflects strong growth in the portioned coffee market in New Zealand and demand among Canterbury’s coffee culture. Globally, portioned coffee is the fastest growing segment of coffee − and that is also true in New Zealand.
Initially employing 10 staff in the Christchurch boutique, Nespresso now has an established head office and a staff of 54 across the three main centres. New Zealand’s growth adds to the swell for the company worldwide, now operating over 370 boutiques and employing 10,000 people in 59 countries.
The boutique was officially opened by Christchurch’s own Richard Ballantyne, ONZM, in an event that was a treat for the senses and a celebration of local talent.
Local abstract artist Lisa Ferguson unveiled a special 15m² artwork made completely from Nespresso capsules in the form of the Christchurch Cathedral’s rose window.
The artwork joins the ranks of other famous capsule portraits of Barack Obama, Ray Charles and − closer to home − a piece made last year by filmmaker Taika Waititi to launch the Wellington boutique.
Entertainment on the night saw a first time collaboration between Christchurch favourite DJ Nacoa and internationally renowned local violinist Fiona Pears.
Also on hand was top Canterbury chef Andrew Brown who created a Nespresso infused menu − inspired by the vast origins of the Nespresso beans − while celebrated mixologist Mikey Ball served Nespresso martinis.
Visitors to the new boutique can discover Nespresso’s range of 22 Grand Cru coffees, explore the full range of machines and browse through an extensive range of accessories.
As part of Nespresso’s commitment to sustainability, Christchurch club members will be encouraged to return their used capsules to the recycling area located within the boutique.
Ballantynes CEO Maria O’Halloran was also present for the opening and said the Nespresso boutique was a highly anticipated addition to the store.
“Ballantynes is delighted that Nespresso has chosen our Christchurch store as the home of its first South Island boutique. It is great to see international brands, such as this one, investing into Christchurch and being part of the city’s rebuild,” said O’Halloran.
The opening of the boutique followed hot on the heels of another major announcement for the brand – the New Zealand release of one of the world’s scarcest coffees as a limited edition, the Nespresso special reserve maragogype.
The giant maragogype variety, also known as the ‘elephant’ bean, is a scarce, green coffee first discovered in the late 1800s across coffee-growing regions in Latin America. Not only is it hard to find, the maragogype coffee bean is amongst the most complex to blend.
Karsten Ranitzsch, head of coffee for Nespresso, said, “Maragogype is our most sophisticated and rarest special reserve yet. Our coffee experts selected only the best maragogype beans from central and South America.”
“For this unique blend, a tailor-made roasting and grinding process was used, resulting in a one-of-a-kind coffee. This culmination of unique human expertise, and extraordinary craftsmanship, provides a unique coffee experience for coffee connoisseurs,” said Ranitzsch.
In celebration of the launch of its new special blend, Nespresso has collaborated with glassware brand, Riedel, to design a flawless glass that enhances the coffee tasting experience for connoisseurs. A special reserve tasting set has been developed, which includes a set of the 'reveal espresso mild' glasses and a sleeve of maragogype coffee.