Published: Wed, December 06, 2017
Money | By Michele Stevens

The world's biggest Starbucks is opening its doors in Shanghai

The world's biggest Starbucks is opening its doors in Shanghai

The biggest Starbucks in the world is headed to China: The coffee behemoth will unveil its newest fancy Roastery location in Shanghai on December 6, occupying a whopping 30,000 feet. Starbucks promises that customers will be greeted by a multi-sensory coffee experience in an interactive coffee and retail destination like no other. Customers can point their mobile devices at key features around the Roastery to immerse themselves in Starbuck's first augmented reality (AR) experience, which is accessible through the custom-designed Roastery digital web-app platform or on Alibaba's Taobao app.

Starbucks is now building more net new company-operated stores in China than the US, said CEO Kevin Johnson, who replaced CEO Howard Schultz in April when the longtime leader transitioned into the role of executive chairman.

CEO Kevin Johnson has targeted the fastest growing market for the company as it looks for ways to jumpstart sluggish worldwide sales after saturating the US market with cappuccinos and lattes.

One of its three coffee bars is 88-feet long, the longest Starbucks bar in the world - because waiting in line is so 2016.

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China is Starbucks fasting growing market with a store opening every 15 hours with more than 3,000 stores across 136 cities.

On offer will be around 80 new coffee and tea products unique to the store and dominating the new Roastery will be a two-story copper roasting cask adorned with more than 1,000 traditional Chinese chops, or stamps, narrating the story of Starbucks and coffee.

In order to target the upmarket coffee segment, Starbucks also plans to open more roastery cafes in New York, Tokyo and Italy. Now, almost 20 years later, China is Starbucks' fastest growing market, with a new store opening every 15 hours. The Roastery's digital experience is designed by Starbucks and powered by Alibaba Group's scene-recognition technology.

But, if you'd rather have tea, you can get that too.

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Here's what it's like to visit the Shanghai Roastery, the most over-the-top Starbucks in the world.

Starbucks furnishes the Shanghai Roastery with Chinese culture-rich decor, blended with the latest trend of augmented reality.

Same-store sales at USA cafes were up 2% for the quarter ended 1 October, while sales in China were up 8%.

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