With more than 18 in-house design studios around the world, designers are driven by Starbucks commitment to environmental sustainability, local relevancy and pushing themselves to bring bold and innovative design to customers. Starbucks has more than 21,000 stores in 66 countries. Here are 10 special stores that opened in 2014:
1. Inspired by the Live Music Capital of the World
For nearly 40 years, an eclectic range of artists have captivated viewers across the country from Austin City Limits Live, the longest running music television program, filmed under the bright lights of the historic Moody Theatre. This much-loved block of Austin, Texas is home to a Starbucks® store that captures the city’s local history, artistic passion and whimsical spirit. It’s one of the many examples of how Starbucks are reflections of the communities the company serves.
2. Two iconic brands collaborate
Starbucks and Disney teamed up to open the first company-operated Starbucks locations at Downtown Disney in Anaheim, California and Walt Disney Resort in Orlando, Florida. The two locations share another special bond. For the first time, Starbucks connects customers through in-store interactive touchscreens. The 70-inch digital display panels – one in each Starbucks® store at the bi-coastal Disney properties – use built-in cameras to create chalk sketches of guests and their surroundings. Customers in the Disney World Starbucks are able to interact with those in the Disneyland location.
3. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Re-imagine
Starbucks relies on shipping containers for transportation around the world. The company also believes in doing things that are good for the earth. That means finding solutions to keep things like old shipping containers out of the waste stream. Starbucks designers found a way to reuse them by creating drive-thru Starbucks® stores. The first popped up in 2012. One of the newest in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, features hand-painted lettering from a local artist.
4. An Urban Coffee Forest
Starbucks marked its 15th anniversary in Korea by opening a store in Seoul’s Famille Park. The store's exterior is a geometric glass dome structure that invites customers to enjoy an urban coffee forest within the city. The interior features coffee trees, wood, and decorations that use eco-friendly materials such as burlap bags. Coffee trees in pots are also placed around the store to bring nature into the space.
5. Honoring Colombia’s Rich Coffee Heritage
In 2014, Starbucks opened its first stores in Colombia honoring the country’s rich coffee heritage and the company’s 43-year history purchasing premium arabica coffee from Colombian farmers. Located in the stylish Parque de la 93 in Bogota, a three-level flagship store serves 100 percent Colombian coffee while offering customers the opportunity to experience Starbucks Reserve® Coffee and the Clover® Brewing System for the first time anywhere in Latin America. Another Starbucks has opened in the LG Building in Bogota’s bustling neighborhood of Chico Norte, home to international embassies, banks, and global businesses.
6. Elevating the Starbucks Experience in China
Nestled in the Chengdu Taikoo Li retail and entertainment district, a recently-opened Starbucks flagship store honors the vibrant culture in Chengdu. The store design features Sichuan-inspired tiles, silk artwork by local craftsmen, and a warm wood tone interior, which is similar to the materials used in the recent refurbishment of the nearby historic Daci Temple, a key cultural landmark in Chengdu. Starbucks also brought an immersive coffee experience to its customers in China with a new lineup of Starbucks Reserve® coffees and an interactive coffee bar to seven stores in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
7. San Francisco’s Nautical Past Inspires Starbucks Designers
Fisherman’s Wharf is home to The Cannery, Ghirardelli Square, and the Hyde Street terminal where cable cars turn around to carry millions of tourists up and down San Francisco’s hills. The Wharf is also the location of a sensational Starbucks® store. A delicate steel portal made of ship’s hull material frames the front door. Inside, customers arrive at a high platform that reveals an overview of the space and is somewhat reminiscent of stepping on board a ship. A cascading staircase leads to another platform and the bar area where baristas handcraft beverages. From there, additional stairs lead to the main floor of polished concrete and a bright, inviting seating area.
8. Honoring Local Culture and Tradition
One of the unique design elements in a new Starbucks® store in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York Over is a grouping of 120 handmade, cylindrical magnetic shapes. Created by a Brooklyn artist, the wall display creates a whimsical piece of art that customers can interact with. The 2,900-square-foot space, specially made for coffee education, is located blocks from the East River Ferry terminal and has many design elements are inspired by the sea, including a tattoo-inspired mural with a siren holding a coffee cup and looking over city.
9. A Canvas for Future Teavana Stores
A first-of-its-kind Teavana® store at Pacific Place in Seattle elevates the tea experience for those who already appreciate premium tea, and welcomes people who aren’t familiar with full leaf teas. The color palate for Teavana’s “Wall of Tea” is more subtle than customers are accustomed to, yet still honors the company’s heritage. Chic blue tones represent oolong teas, copper for Rooibos and gold for herbal teas. The most prominent change is a tea bar at the store’s entrance, where tea beverages are handcrafted for customers and samples are offered to shoppers as they stroll toward the attractive space.
10. The Roastery – “Everything we’ve ever done has led us to this point”
More than two years in development, Starbucks Reserve® Roastery and Tasting Room opened this month. Every detail of the space was intentional and reflects the handcrafted nature of coffee from bean to cup. An estimated 1.4 million pounds of small lot coffee will be roasted in the 15,000 square foot café and Roastery in the first year, supplying all of the Reserve® coffee store needs around the world. Starbucks chairman, president and ceo Howard Schultz called the stunning new space, “an homage to our relentless pursuit of coffee innovation that will create for our customers the most immersive, sensory demonstration of how we source, roast and craft the finest coffee from around the world. Everything we’ve ever done has led us to this point.”