DEVELOPERS of the resurrected Bobby’s department store in Bournemouth have announced the first group of retailers to trade in the store when it opens next month.
The store in the iconic former Debenhams building will open its doors on Thursday September 9, a month later than originally planned.
Ashley Nicholson, director of Verve – the developer behind the Bobby’s relaunch, said: “It’s been a mad few weeks but we are so excited for Bobby’s to be opening after so long.
“We are busy working on the next phases but hope people will be patient with us as there is still a lot to do to bring the building back to its glory days. We hope that this is the first step in providing a reason to visit the town centre.”
Ahead of its reopening – 50 years after the brand disappeared – the first eight elements to be welcomed into the store are as follows.
Bobby’s Beauty Hall offers “a fresh new look at health and wellbeing retail”. The hall will house global brands as well as a dedicated section for local, sustainable and conscious beauty and health products, many of which are exclusive to Bobby’s.
A performance area will sit immediately adjacent to the Beauty Hall where there will be product sampling, make-up tutorials and talks from founders who will tell the story behind their products to customers.
The UK’s largest artist-run contemporary gallery space will be situated on the second floor with two major exhibitions – The Art of Protest and Big Medicine. Including works by international artists, among them Turner prize winner Jeremy Deller and new site-specific pieces by Nicky Carvel, Jim Lambie, and Gary Card.
Bobby’s Ice Cream Parlour
A small and locally run parlour, the ice cream team will be serving up a selection of delicious homemade ice cream, freshly ground coffee and baked goods every day of the week.
Drool is the first food hall devoted entirely to dogs. Featuring a cake shop, a “Lick ‘n’ Mix station”, a doggy tuck shop, a dog ball recycling centre, fish and chip flavoured treats and even liver cakes. With the abundance of new dog owners over the pandemic, this is the must visit destination for your four-legged friend.
Drgnfly is a unique Pan-Asian and Sushi restaurant with a site in Ashley Cross, Poole. With a blend of old and new, their talented ‘itame’ blend colour, art and creativity with texture and exquisite fresh flavours will create unique dishes for diners. The new DRGNFLY will be situated within the heart of the Beauty Hall.
South Coast Makers Shop
South Coast Makers shop will showcase a varied collection of one-of-a-kind art, design and craft work handmade by makers from the south coast. The ever-changing collection includes ceramics, woodwork, homewares, stationery, greeting cards and candles alongside locally produced food and drink such as artisan gin, handmade fudge and honey.
Benito Brow Bar
As pioneers of the stand-alone brow bar, Benito offers a full range of facial threading services from precise speedy brow shaping to lashes in many sizes, shapes, and flutteryness. Everyone is welcome and customers can simply walk-in or book a service. For more information, visit: benitobrowbar.com.
Intime Watch repair
As members of the British Watch & Clock Makers Guild, Intime Watch has been providing a dedicated watch and jewellery service to customers all over the world for more than forty years. Be it a simple repair or something more complex, the repairs team appreciates that many watches and jewellery pieces hold sentimental value. For more information, visit: intime.co.uk.
Later in 2021 the building will see the opening of The Bobby & Co Market Hall featuring independent traders and will be spread across the entire first floor alongside Bobby’s Bar, the Deli, Coffee Lounge and Bobby’s Emporium Liquor store.
More elements are planned to open throughout the year and into 2022, including DISTRICT – a smokery, serving craft beers a top floor fine dining restaurant, roof top bar, onsite bakery and gardens.