Did you hear?... Orvis opens 23,000-square-foot store

At a time when most retailers are thinking smaller and leaner, Orvis is bucking the trend. A new $7 million, 23,000-square-foot Orvis flagship store just opened for business on Historic Route 7A in Manchester, Vt., adjacent to the site of the original Orvis store which was demolished this summer after 50 years of retail service.
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At a time when most retailers are thinking smaller and leaner, Orvis is bucking the trend. A new $7 million, 23,000-square-foot Orvis flagship store just opened for business on Historic Route 7A in Manchester, Vt., adjacent to the site of the original Orvis store which was demolished this summer after 50 years of retail service. The Orvis store is thought to be the largest outdoor retail store in Vermont, and company executives say they expect the store to attract more than 250,000 annual visitors to the state. But it's not size that counts, remember? It's what you do with it that matters, and Orvis is delivering in spades. Outside, the store resembles a small campus with two trout ponds and the Orvis Rod Shop nearby. Inside the store, kids will be able to feed trout in an indoor pond while learning about various fish species from specially prepared educational displays. Sales departments include fly-fishing equipment and apparel, hunting equipment and apparel, men’s and women’s travel and leisure clothing, home furnishings and gifts, shoes, and pet products. There are historic fly-fishing illustrations on the walls and displays of antique fishing gear, two 30-foot working stone fireplaces, and knee-high mirrors for dogs or their accompanying owners to admire their furry selves (that would be the dogs, not the owners in most cases) sporting new collars. Even the store’s well-appointed bathrooms – with wood paneling, cushioned waiting chairs, and gold faucets drew raves. SNEWS® View: This isn't a store! It's a shopping experience, and that's the point. The company realized quite quickly that the best way to ensure BTDs (that's Butts Through Doors for those who don't speak Eagle Creek's Steve Barker's language) is to offer more than just product for sale. An Orvis store visit is already penciled into the SNEWS® team's travel agenda.

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