Clubhouses breakdown, Rapha

The last summer i cloud fulfill a dream, I was visiting a Rapha Clubhouse, Mallorca. Some people will not understand how that can be a dream, other will not understand how i can love a brand and not having nothing from them.

This company has been an inspiration for to many people and changes in the last five years, they change the way of understand the cycling. The first time that i was talking with someone about Rapha, the tag for the brand was "vintage", but i think the right tag should be "inspirational". Inspirational from the videos, photography, collections, products... and in the end they even  have been changed the concept how to understand a Cycling Club and how to Understand the "retail areas".

The first time that i show on life the Rapha clothes, was on 2013 at the Condor Store in London. I can remember that the Shop was nice and cute in general, but i cant't remember nothing special from the Rapha corner.

On this post i will try to make a description about whats makes a Rapha Clubhouse the dream paradise of a road cyclist. Physically i only visit one, but digitally i can say i has been visit all of them, archive stores, pop up stores, and also some Rapha's trucks.

First the inspirational elements as a piece of art, or a piece of art as an inspirational element is one of the keys, is a balance between the quantity and quality. The heritage of cycling is not only on the goods that you can buy, is around you on each RCH. How are the frames-posters or the jerseys on the walls create a unique touch.

The concept of a normal Bike Shop, is a retail area where you can choose between a lot of bikes and a lot of clothes and on a big percent of the situations the choice for the client will be a balance with the price, quality, season, needs and the desire to have it. What i saw online and offline is different, offline the price is never a reason to buy it (they will shot you with thousands of newsletters for promotions online) a RCH is not a shop, is a place to celebrate the cyclist culture.

For me, the most important different with concept stores, is that they create a high level of expectation online, so you can feel part of a community, be a member of their club and maybe never been in a Clubhouses, the Clubhouse is place like they, rides, events, live racing. A concept store have other projection, the important is not the culture or the community, is just the brand.

The presentation of the goods is not focus to have an independence experience, not all the size are out, not everything is touchable, but that doesn't create a cold connection in the shop, my experience in Majorca was great, the girl in the upper floor where the goods are, was pleasant, and she explained to me the promotions that was at the moment in the shop, casually i could remember that promotions from a newsletter but was not "write"on the POS directly.

The coffee culture take a big challenge on the way to understand the Rapha culture or actions. How i see they are a brand really strong online, that create the passion for the apparel online, where you can use almost all the senses , and them the RCH is the place where all this online ideas turn true and fulfill all the senses. In particular with the coffee culture i will go more deep in another post.

In conclusion a Rapha Clubhouse is where the heritage and the future trends mach to create an atmosphere unique of elegance, culture and passion.