When they’re shopping for bud, cannabis consumers in California have thousands of places to choose from. But when it comes to catering to the consumer expectations of high net-worth customers, fewer companies are vying for that space. There have been a few breakouts, however. There’s MedMen’s up-scale chain of marijuana dispensaries, which have been dubbed both the “Apple store of weed” and “the Barneys of weed.” Plug is another high-end cannabis dispensary in Los Angeles, which LA Weekly also called “the Barneys of weed.” But come March, the true “Barneys of weed” will be a cannabis shop actually run by Barneys. And that store will be selling luxury bongs, vapes and a sterling silver grinder that costs almost $1,500.
Luxury Department Store Enters the High-End Cannabis Retail Space
In case you didn’t get the picture, Barneys is driving the point home with branding. The company is dubbing the new high-end retail space it’s developing for cannabis consumers, The High End. More than slicing into the upscale consumer market for cannabis, Barneys wants The High End to craft an environment that will attract the formidable marketing force of Instagram influencers.
The High End is more about draw than it is about products. But that doesn’t mean the store’s offerings won’t be absurdly top-shelf. If you’re someone who likes weed and has no idea how to spend money, check out what’s in store at The High End.
First, there’s the most luxurious paraphernalia you can imagine. Dvambez rolling papers made from 100 percent French-grown, organic hemp. Artisanal, one-of-a-kind, hand-blown water pipes and bongs by chic glassware studio Siemon and Salazar. Stash boxes crafted by the boutique jewelry designer Martine Ali. Even diamond-studded and gold roach-clips designed by Good Art Hlywd. Exclusive silver and rose gold vape pens. And don’t forget your grinder! A pure sterling silver weed grinder will set you back just $1,475.
The High End will certainly deliver the goods. But its real goal is delivering an experience. “If someone is going to come into a physical store, they really expect more than product, because product, unfortunately, is available in a million different places,” CEO and president of Barneys Daniella Vitale told the New York Times. “We want to make sure there is an entertainment value here.”
Barneys Cannabis Store Won’t Have a Dispensary License
Vitale says that upscale retailers are under pressure to produce Instagram-friendly moments for the high-profile influencers who might check out the store. Barneys’ creative director Matthew Mazzucca said The High End will offer a mid-century vibe, replete with lots of glass, patinated brass and raw marble.
But for all the luxurious touches, underneath The High End is basically another head shop. Barneys isn’t planning on getting a dispensary license for its new cannabis shop. And that means customers won’t be able to purchase cannabis there.
Instead, Barneys has partnered with a number of boutique and high-end cannabis producers and retailer whose products will be on offer at The High End. One such producer is Beboe, a retailer that has collaborated with famed Bay Area cultivator Mario Sherbinksi, among others.
So if you’re shopping at The High End, you won’t be able to walk out of the store with any fresh bud for your thousand-dollar grinder. Or with any oil for your thousand-dollar vape pen. But you will be able to place an order for delivery with Beboe representatives.
The High End will open at the Barneys store in Beverly Hills in March. The company plans to open several more High End shops across California, and may even set up in New York if the state legalizes weed this year.