Scouted: How Estée Lauder’s ownership is finally impacting retail strategy at Le Labo.

CHICAGO — It’s been nearly three years since Estée Lauder went on its first spending spree, swiping up Le Labo, Frederic Malle, and Rodin Olio Lusso in quick succession in 2014 — and in the process instantly establishing itself as one of the leading legacy players to actively play in the modern luxury space.

In context: On the back of WWD’s report that Le Labo is stepping up its retail efforts — and also seriously helping out Estée Lauder’s bottom line — we finally get a look at how Lauder’s ownership is steering strategy for the Manhattan-based fragrance firm. (continued below…)

One of their newest stores, just unveiled in Chicago, went without any PR push, and was stumbled upon by subscriber Seimi Huang who lives nearby. She decided to go on a quick tour for the benefit of Lean Luxe readers, and she gives us a look at the newest Chicago store.

We’ll let Seimi take it away:

“A new Le Labo store very quietly opened up in my neighborhood here in Chi-Town. So quietly, in fact, that I cannot find any marketing information on it. Maybe this speaks to my researching skills (or the lack there of). However, a quick google search tells me that they are expanding their retail footprint to LA in March. Is this part of the Estée Lauder- backed fragrance house’s growth strategy?”

No. 1

– “I took a field trip!”

No. 2

No. 2

– “They mix perfume in the store as it is purchased (one of the services not able to be fulfilled by Barneys).”

No. 3

No. 3

No. 4

No. 4

– “The opening is timed with the Robey hotel launch. They carry Le Labo products throughout the space.”

No. 5

No. 5

– “Last picture of my Le Labo trip. Apparently they’ve quietly launched retail spaces in a few cities recently.”

Heads up: For more insights on Le Labo, Richie Siegel’s report on luxury and scale is a must read.

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