New Yorkers walking through the trendy SoHo district starting July 19 will catch a glimpse of perhaps the most unique retail store in the audio market.
Sonos is opening its first retail store on 101 Greene Street, nicknamed 101G, with the goal of giving users and prospective customers an audio listening experience that they just can’t get anywhere else.
While it’s certainly possibly to hear a Sonos speaker in a store like Best Buy or Target, the experience will never be the same once the speaker is hooked up at home. Why? Because consumers don’t live in spaces that resemble big box, warehouse or department stores. The acoustics, shape and size of the space are all different, so the sound will be different too.
Sonos built the store from the ground up to mimic the experience of listening to music in the home. When visitors enter the store, instead of seeing a bunch of Sonos speakers on shelves as they might expect, they’ll see a row of seven listening rooms, which actually look a bit like mini houses.
“It’s a very unusual experience,” says Dmitri Siegel, vice president of global brand and executive creative director for Sonos. “We’ve devoted almost all of the floor plan to these listening rooms. You’ll be able to go in there with whoever you come in with, and we’re going to leave you alone and let you listen to music.”