Estée Lauder-owned fragrance brand Le Labo will open its first freestanding Canadian store in Toronto this spring. It is expected to be the first of multiple locations for the brand, as it expands beyond wholesale into its own retail stores.
The pricey Le Labo brand was founded in 2006 as a collection of 10 fragrances by Fabrice Penot and Edouard Roschi. The number in the fragrance name indicates the number of notes in its composition and the name of material (Vetiver, Jasmin, Labdanum) refers to the most prominent note within. The brand now features 45 perfumes, with its most recent having been created in 2015. Prices generally range between $100 and over $500 for fragrances and related products. Le Labo was acquired by New York City-based beauty conglomerate Estée Lauder in 2014.
Le Labo currently operates 32 stores internationally, as well as shop-in-stores in leading retailers. Of the 32 boutiques, 15 are in the United States, 12 are in Europe, and five are in Asia. American stores are in cities including New York City (four stores), Los Angeles area (four stores), San Francisco, Portland, Boston, Washington DC, Chicago and Dallas. There are also five stores in London UK, four in Paris, two in Berlin, one in Antwerp, two in Hong Kong, two in Seoul and one in Tokyo. Stores are often located in ‘trendy’ shopping areas.
Le Labo’s first Canadian store will open at 876 Queen Street West, in the heart of the city’s hip ‘West Queen West’ area. The store joins a number of trendy brands that have recently opened nearby, including Aesop, Warby Parker and Shinola.
CBRE is representing Le Labo’s Canadian real estate expansion, with Martin Moriarty and Mario Negris from the Vancouver office helping coordinate deals nationally. The Toronto Queen Street West lease was negotiated by CBRE Downtown Toronto’s Jackson Turner, Arlin Markowitz, and Alex Edmison.
Le Labo became available in Canada in 2010, when Toronto-based 6 by Gee Beauty (at 6 Roxborough St. W. in affluent Rosedale) began carrying the line exclusively in Canada. That exclusivity was lifted in September of 2015 when Nordstrom opened its CF Pacific Centre flagship in Vancouver, also carrying the brand. In February of 2016, Saks Fifth Avenue’s new Toronto flagship opened with a Le Labo counter contained within, and in October of 2016 a Le Labo shop opened within the new Nordstrom at Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre.