Leica UK is in the process of expanding its Mayfair site to include a new studio, a hire facility (for S2 system cameras and lenses), an exclusive complimentary cafe and new offices. The Client Care Centre, which offers on-site sensor cleaning, servicing and repairs, will also be relocated to a new street-level facility visible from within the cafe.
Above: A computer aided design image of the new cafe
The second-storey studio will be available for hire by anyone who owns or wishes to rent a Leica S2 and the rental includes the services of a Leica assistant. However, David Bell, Leica UK's Managing Director, said that photographers would not necessarily have to use an S2 in the studio.
Meanwhile the cafe will be open to Leica users and invited guests.
Above: The large studio will have plenty of natural light as well as studio lights
This expansion comes as a result of Leica UK securing the lease of a three-storey property at 27 Bruton Place opposite the existing Mayfair store.
According to David Bell, the idea and design of the new facilities has been inspired by premium retailers such as Apple in Regent Street and Paul Smith in Covent Garden. Its location in Mayfair is hoped to be convenient for celebrity shoots and the studio has a private entrance to ensure discretion.
Leica UK opened the Mayfair store at 34 Bruton Place in 2009 and its Client Care Centre was opened opposite a year later at 25 Bruton Place.
Above: The projected design of the new Client Care Centre
Following the completion of the work at 25 and 27 Bruton Place, the existing rooms and studio at number 34 above the existing Leica store will be refurbished. The current Leica Akademie training facility will be expanded to include a second Akademie room. This will enable Leica UK to offer a wider range of workshops, product demonstrations and advice sessions.
Leica UK plans to open the studio, new café and Customer Care Centre in February 2012.