Baja Duty Free teams up with Bloommiami to open first Diageo store-in-store at San Ysidro

Baja-1webDiageo and Baja Duty Free have collaborated with design, architecture and brand-consulting agency Bloommiami to create a Diageo store-within-a-store for Baja Duty Free’s San Ysidro location,

The permanent store, which opened in August, features Diageo’s popular brands including Johnnie Walker, Buchanan’s, Bailey’s and Captain Morgan, as well as the brand’s luxury division, World Class. The unique store design boasts attention-grabbing, disruptive design elements that were strategically incorporated to guide the consumer towards Diageo’s multi-award winning portfolio of fine spirits like Ciroc, Ketel One, Don Julio and Ron Zacapa.

“This is the first Diageo store-within-a-store on the Southern border and we are super excited to have this beautiful and modern concept in our store. We have been working on this project for months and it is great to see the final result implemented in the store,” Irene Rojas, marketing manager at Baja Duty Free’s parent company Fairn & Swanson, tells TMI.

“Bloommiami did an awesome job designing the concept. There are so many innovative details from the lighting, to the ceiling, the visuals –every bay wall has its own character,” she continued.

Ricardo Arandia, Diageo’s Commercial Manager for the Border Channel, explains that the store-within-a- store at Baja Duty Free is the pilot test for the company on the Southern Border.

“Our intention is to continue this journey raising the bar of execution with high standards in this strategic channel for Diageo,” he tells TMI. “We are truly believers this concept will bring a new air to the business inviting more clients to spend a really nice time while choosing products within our world class portfolio. We want our brands to show up in a luxury way providing the best experience possible to our consumers. The initiative was created based on shopper behavior trends as well as provide a disruptive and unique experience in the area,” said Arandia.


Key design features include a ceiling treatment made from slatted hardwood that was intentionally installed to attract consumers to the Diageo store and set it apart from the rest of the store. In another effort to attract consumers into the design-forward section, several recessed LED strip lights were installed in an irregular pattern to disrupt the adjacent store lighting and create interference.

“Bloommiami created a branded retail experience that brings to life marquis Diageo products in a high traffic location,” said Darin Held, partner at Bloommiami, which is a. “The store-within-a-store concept has become very popular in the retail industry because brands can control the environment and incorporate specific brand touch points without incurring the expense of a stand-alone store.”

In order to provide consumers with a tangible, memorable experience, the store’s main counter serves multiple purposes operating as a tasting bar, a multi-teared product display, and a digital media learning center using interactive iPads where customers can review drink recipes, flavor profiles and learn about the different brands through its World Class Reserve application.

“We want to provide customers with a great shopping experience, where they can not only choose from a wide selection of products, but also learn about them, get recipes, watch videos on IPADS and two main monitors, as well as taste some of the excellent Diageo brands,” says Rojas, confirming that Baja plans to implement the “store within store” in some of its other locations.

From a retail standpoint, Diageo’s Arandia says it is very important for Diageo to educate the consumers/shoppers.

“This is why we set up the project with a bar look and feel, in order to run regular sampling sessions. We also have included technology through tablets with an interactive Diageo’s app in which the shopper will discover the main features of each brand, recommended perfect serves as well as cocktail recipes.  Also on the monitors, the shoppers will be able to see the preparation of around 50 world class cocktails designed by the most famous bartenders in the world. We want to provide a rounded experience so the shopper feel welcome and spend a great time in the store.”


San Ysidro on the San Diego-Tijuana border is one of the busiest land border crossings in the world.