I tried Rent the Runway's new Amazon Go-inspired store in San Francisco and it felt like shoplifting
Rent the Runway
- On Wednesday Rent the Runway, an online clothing rental company, opened its fifth physical retail location in San Francisco's Financial District.
- The 8,300 square-foot retail space is the company's largest to date.
- It includes a coworking space and beauty bar in its two-floor layout, available to Rent the Runway subscribers and non-customers alike.
- Chief Operating Officer Maureen Sullivan told Business Insider the space is the "Amazon Go" of clothing retail, with automated checkouts, expedited returns, and zero price tags.
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Rent the Runway's largest retail space yet could be your new dream closet.
On Wednesday, the online clothing rental company opened its fifth physical retail location in San Francisco's Financial District. The 8,300 square-foot, two-floor space is the company's largest to date, and includes a barista, 20 dressing rooms, a beauty bar, and coworking space.
Rent the Runway is an online rental market for women's and children's clothing through monthly memberships. The company has been credited with popularizing clothing rentals for special occasions and everyday wear, and was most recently valued at $1 billion in March.
"It's like the Amazon Go model of shopping," Rent the Runway COO Maureen Sullivan told Business Insider. "It's all automated. You just scan the barcode on the item, throw it in your bag, and walk out."
Sullivan's pitch was so convincing, we had to try it for ourselves, and it was as seamless as she described - but left me feeling like I had just shoplifted designer clothing. Although self-checkout isn't quite as futuristic as Amazon's cashierless convenience stores, Rent the Runway has implemented the concept in a cooler way than you might think.
The company's other retail locations operate more like traditional stores, with salespeople and price tags: The biggest selling point for those locations is that you can order a piece online, and pick it up in person.