This is the kind of store that I would love to spend an entire weekend in.
The Canal Walk Cape Union Mart Adventure Centre has something of everything for everyone. Ok, I must first admit that finding this invigorating store was a bit of a hit and miss affair, as the large retail spaces on the outskirts of the Canal Walk Mall parking are not as well promoted as they could be. Unfortunately this retail space looks like an office block from the outside as the windows are so tinted that the traditional method of using window displays to attract customers is not ideal. The signage is very clear but it is so high up that it is easily missed.
However this imperfect first impression changed completely once I had stepped inside the store. On entering, I am met with the exciting adventure zone, a fun space to go shopping, where I can interact with the products in ways that enhance my senses and my overall experience. This very large double volume space reminds me of the huge lifestyle stores I visited in South America. As I walked around the shop floor I noticed several cleverly placed design details helping to fill this huge space in just the right places. The size of this in-store space requires strong use of focal points to give direction and shopper confidence in what could otherwise be an overwhelmingly large floor area. The well placed, highly visible focal points ease in-store navigation and are no doubt appreciated, in particular, by those male shoppers who prefer to shop for specific products rather than browsing. My eyes gazed over the wood-inside-glass-cube plinths that the male mannequins stand on, the rotating merchandise rail, the shoes placed in front of different material backdrops, the climbing wall, the cold room, the rain room, the scary-hairy spiders and my all-time favourite the different ground surfaces available to test your trail boots on. This is definitely a destination store where you can go to get that specific item, or where you can just browse and browse for hours and stock up on absolutely everything that you might need for a camping trip, a 4×4 trail, a safari holiday, a hiking trip, an overseas trek, a ski resort or an epic expedition, the office, the rugby, a tea party, gardening and so so so SO much more. There is something for everyone at just about any time.
The store is laid out perfectly with men’s clothing range, Old Khaki, CU & Co on the right as you enter the store and ladies clothing range, Poetry, on the first floor to the right . The outdoor technical clothing zone has items like jackets designed to protect you from snow, wind, rain. You can test the jackets in the cold room or rain room. The technical equipment like tents, sleeping bags, etc. on the left upstairs next to the hairy-scary spiders. There is an abundant array of boots, shoes and sandals at the back next to the different ground-surface track pads and the climbing wall. There is even a children’s department with it’s very own toddler climbing wall. I think that my husband, brother, father and brother-in-law would spend most of their time in the gadget zone that greets you as you walk in. This zone has a multitude of gadgets and tools to help you through just about every tricky moment you might encounter on your next adventure. There is a dedicated sales staff team in this area, full of knowledge about the products on offer.
Walking through this store makes me long to go on an adventure and it motivates me into gearing up. This is a lifestyle store in the true sense and I know that I will be back with the entire family for a fun-filled shopping experience.