Rent the Runway's New Store Is Set Up to Be Your 'Dream Closet'

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We visited the revamped designer dress rental store in New York City that combines tech and fashion.

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Rent the Runway, a company that loans out designer dresses and accessories, just revamped its New York City flagship store to create a tech-savvy hangout for on-the-go shoppers.

Related: How to Create an Amazing Customer Experience

The company’s new 5,000-square-foot space at 30 West 15th St. incorporates iPad check-in kiosks and Samsung screens that debut Rent the Runway trends and new arrivals scattered throughout the store.

The new space seeks to make the rental service easy, simple and personalized -- focusing on the customer experience above all else.

When you first walk into the shop, you notice a long bar to the left that features a rental drop-off receptacle and a check-out counter. Each are positioned to make for a seamless shopping and rental experience.
While waiting for a dressing room or personal styling appointment, customers can sip on a cocktail at the RTR bar, pick up an online order, work with an RTR rep or browse inventory.

To the right is a lobby-like seating area with a 75-inch digital wall featuring RTR looks, trends and new arrivals. The wall seeks to bring RTR style to life and is visible from the street to engage passerbys.

Related: The Future Of Fashion As We See It

To help guide people through the rental experience, just past the lobby are iPad check-in kiosks to make for a speedier shopping experience. The process is simple: Customers can sign in or create a new account and even book a dressing room in advance to avoid waiting in any lines.

Unlike the setup of an average designer retail shop with racks of dresses and mannequins, Rent the Runway is set up like a “dream closet.” In fact, it wants customers to think of it not as a store but as their own walk-in closet adorned with a variety of unique dresses, shoes for sale, handbags and tables of jewelry.

If you’ve elected for a 45-minute personal styling appointment, you’ll have created a profile of your style preferences beforehand so one of Rent the Runway’s style specialists can select outfits for you to try on. These outfits will be waiting for you in RTR’s Style Studio, where you can go to test them out and add accessories.

Related: These 15 Companies Are Bringing Tech to Fashion

With Rent the Runway's app, customers can now browse items that are available for same-day rental. Personalized closet profiles are also created for customers with data captured from a their online and in-store actions.

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