Nearly two decades ago, Chip Wilson opened a yoga apparel store on the northwest corner of West 4th Avenue and Arbutus Street in Kitsilano. Few could have foreseen the immense influence it has had on Vancouver, which has since become a yoga-loving, fitness-crazed city, and its transformation into a multinational company.
Earlier this week, the Lululemon store at 2101 West 4th Avenue that started it all had its soft reopening. With a total floor area of 6,300-sq-ft, it now encompasses a new expansion building that occupies the space that was formerly Midas.
“Our Kitsilano store represents so much for us, most importantly it’s where our educators built and created the brand we are today with the community by our side,” Celeste Burgoyne, Executive Vice President of Retail, Americas of Lululemon, told Daily Hive.
“Our growth is indicative of what can happen when our guests, our educators and our community all come together in a powerful and connected way. I could not be more excited to reopen our iconic store in the heart of Kits—where it all started almost 20 years ago.”
The expansion floor area is being used as the space for the women’s section while the original store space next door is the men’s section. Both sections will eventually be merged into one seamlessly accessible store with the demolition of a wall.
A collection of old photographs, past community event posters, and a brass plaque commemorating the company’s founding year decorates the walls. The plaque aptly reads, “In Practice Since 1998.”
Large interior murals have also been painted by local artists Paige Bowman and Kris Kupskay.
As well, the company has made good use of its rooftop space by turning it into a large outdoor patio complete with patio furniture and a BBQ. It can be used to hold community events and, of course, yoga sessions.
The store will hold its grand reopening festivities this Saturday, August 5 from 1 pm to 5 pm.
Lululemon is headquartered in Kitsilano near the south end of the Burrard Bridge. It has 3,000 employees worldwide and over 350 retail locations.