Fair Play to Starbucks

Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby notjim » Fri Sep 12, 2008 10:51 am

TCD has leased the ground floor of the bank to a bar operator, papers signed about two months ago, it will retain the upper floors. Originally it was planned to use the banking hall as a one-stop-shop for admin, I am sorry this admirable plan was abandoned. I continue to regard the sale of the two Foster Place houses as completely inexplicable.
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby GrahamH » Fri Sep 12, 2008 11:14 am

Absolutely. And the pair only netted a piddling €3 million.

A one-stop shop for admin is desirable, notjim, but surely not at this of all locations, especially if plans for College Green ever come to pass which directly relate to uses on Foster Place.

That's interesting about the bar - a welcome development, but possibly not the more permanent use that would be preferable for this site, nor the hoards of smokers, ashtrays abd fabric railings that will inevitably clog the entrance. Hopefully it will market itself differently to The Bank on College Green too.

I went in the Royal Bank buildings a few months ago having taken the wrong entrance into an adjoining office building, and the most bizarre scenario confronted me. A solitary man was seated at a desk in this cavernous unlit banking hall, with thin shafts of light penetrating various voids catching strewn papers and upturned furnishings, and an enormous and remarkably ugly Connemara marble fireplace looming behind him.

*sinister voice* "Can I help you?".

*overawed voice* Can I live here too?
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby notjim » Fri Sep 12, 2008 11:21 am

GrahamH wrote:A one-stop shop for admin is desirable, notjim, but surely not at this of all locations, especially if plans for College Green ever come to pass which directly relate to uses on Foster Place.


It is desirable to me but yes, only for selfish reasons.
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby Rory W » Fri Sep 12, 2008 11:49 am

It would make a fantaastic restaurant rather than just another boozer in the style of 'The Bank' up the road
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby GrahamH » Fri Sep 12, 2008 11:52 am

Precisely. The banking counter would make a great feature in centre, acting as a bar serving the surrounding tables.
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby adhoc » Tue Nov 18, 2008 3:11 pm

Passing the Celtic Note shop on Nassau Street today I noticed a waxwork/dummy of the late Joe Dolan in the window. At Joe's feet lay a sign saying that the Waxworks Museum would be opening in Foster Place in February 2009.

Does anyone know which building it will occupy?
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby phil » Tue Nov 18, 2008 3:13 pm

I saw this too. Perhaps the old Bank of Ireland Arts Centre building?
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby GrahamH » Wed Oct 07, 2009 9:25 pm

Alas it is. Not so much the use, as the arrogant signage they have just erected. Are these guys having a laugh?!

Image

It looks ten times worse during the day, crassly mounted on the facade of Francis Johnston's exquisitely refined Armoury Building. From what I can make out, this intervention to one of the most important historic buildings in the city doesn't even have planning permission.

The integrity of this immaculate, historically intact enclave is being eroded by the day, with the eye-poppingly inappropriate taxi rank recently granted permission for expansion by DCC. Words fail. Just some of the chaotic results can be seen above.

As a taster of what we're up against here, this was recently posted on a taxi driver's blog: "Foster Place is just beside Trinity College. This rank is one of the oldest in the city of Dublin yet for some reason the powers that be are planning on closing it."

If only.
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby Paul Clerkin » Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:19 pm

That is bleedin' awful....
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby reddy » Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:12 am

O god. How did they get away with that? Is the city council that busy that they just can't cope with dealing with shockers like this?

I'd kill to get my hands on the enforcement section in that place and give it a good shake up.
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby PVC King » Fri Jan 01, 2010 11:39 pm

Unbranded Starbucks stores attempt to
come up with a new brew

LONDON ‐ Will the coffee chain's trial of unbranded shops bolster the core brand or backfire?

At the end of this week, global coffee chain Starbucks will begin trials of an unbranded store in its US home‐town of Seattle. One of three such outlets planned, the first shop will be called 15th Avenue Coffee and Tea. An attempt to revert to Starbucks' original positioning as a quirky, local coffeehouse, it will run poetry events and sell unbranded coffee as well as wine and beer.

It is hard to think of another brand that has done anything similar. This has led to speculation as to whether it is a simple exercise in reconnecting with consumers. Alternatively, is it a fresh format which, if successful, will be rolled out elsewhere, or a reaction to critics who oppose globalisation? Perhaps the reasons for the launch are more complex than they first appear.

A statement from Starbucks did not give much away, and says only that the new shops are a return to the way the company operated before its global expansion. As well as being unbranded, the fresh format will have ‘flexibility' in the form of different opening hours from the regular Starbucks branches, and a licence to sell alcohol. If the activity is a way of reconnecting with lost customers, it is certainly needed. This year, the recession‐hit coffee chain closed more than 700 stores and cut thousands of jobs after a drop in sales.

Question of motivation


Nicola Mendelsohn, chairman and partner at ad agency Karmarama, which works with Starbucks' archrival in the UK, Costa Coffee, is sceptical of the venture, and labels it as Starbucks' ‘midlife crisis'.

‘Consumers are not stupid,' she says. ‘They know Starbucks bought a lot of independent shops out of the market when it started its global operations. It is a wolf in sheep's clothing.' Size may have brought success to Starbucks, but it has also led to issues of brand depersonalisation. As Starbucks grew, it had to become more efficient. It introduced automated coffee machines, with the result that arguably its outlets became more like fast‐food restaurants than places customers could relax.

Some experts therefore believe its unbranded stores initiative is not only logical, but necessary. David Hutchinson, sales and marketing director at Paramount Restaurants and a former global marketing director at Costa Coffee for more than four years, argues that Starbucks is experiencing what all successful brands do when they move from being a small, niche firm to a global entity.

‘It is a phenomenally successful company that started off as a local brand but grew incredibly quickly,' he says. ‘The brand was originally loved and respected by everyone, but the corporate world decided it had become too big.' Phillip Davies, managing director of business brands at branding agency Dragon Rouge, believes that Starbucks' rebranding is a positive step. ‘The company is returning to the business model it always intended to have,' he says. ‘It wants to regain a community personality and the image of the neighbourhood coffee shop.'

However, Davies warns that the business might find it difficult to return to its roots. ‘It needs to focus on the inherent values of being local; it needs to employ local staff; it needs to be suitably different from Starbucks' corporate image.'
However, David Anderson, director of Cada Design Group, argues that most consumers don't have issues with the brand. ‘I know I just passively accept Starbucks,' he says, adding that consumers are looking for a home away from home, and ‘want it in an environment that isn't so heavily corporate branded'.

Anderson, who has worked on café concepts for brands including Pret A Manger and Caffè Italia, believes the motivation for Starbucks may have been that it had hit a developmental dead end. ‘In this sector, too many companies focus on product innovation,' he says. ‘They think customers are brand loyal or product loyal, but they are not. It comes down to convenience and providing a space people want to be in.'

This may well be true, but there is concern about whether Starbucks' decision will further marginalise independent coffeehouses ‐ one reason why its popularity has dwindled. Nonetheless, if handled well, the unbranded stores could sharpen the core brand. The shops will allow Starbucks to trial fresh approaches to the business it might not want to try in branded outlets. Conversely, if handled badly, they may be more akin to an Irish‐themed pub that bears no relation to the real deal.


From an architectural point of view this is good news; the new unbranded Starbucks on Conduit St London has the most minimalist signage I've seen yet; given that it is in a period stone faced terrace that was the ideal result.
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Listed granite, Foster Place

Postby Devin » Wed Mar 23, 2011 3:23 pm

City Council finally observing their policy on listed granite?? ............. maybe the failure of the UNESCO bid ....


Image

2009. Some flags were removed out of the listed pavement on Foster Place for the usual services digging, and replaced in blacktop.




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2010. A year later nasty white granite is slipped back in.




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Close up. The white granite appeared to have been taken from another location already in use so it wouldn't look too bright and contrasty.




Image

2011. A complaint suceeded in getting the original flags put back this time .... but strap pointed lol.
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Re: Fair Play to Starbucks

Postby aj » Fri Apr 01, 2011 8:42 pm

why did they not put the originals back in the first place ... has DCC the money to waste laying footpaths three times?
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