Starbucks' new Bali store is designed for tourists

Starbucks wants its new location to be a tourist destination.The Starbucks Dewata Coffee Sanctuary, w...

Posted: Jan 13, 2019 9:10 AM
Updated: Jan 13, 2019 9:10 AM

Starbucks wants its new location to be a tourist destination.

The Starbucks Dewata Coffee Sanctuary, which opens January 13 in Bali, Indonesia, is more than just a coffee shop. It has an 1,000-square-foot coffee farm out front and a nursery where customers can plant seeds. People can take coffee tasting and preparation classes and virtually participate in the planting process through an interactive digital wall.

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Eventually, large groups will be able to take custom tours of the store for a price.

The location is one of Starbucks' Reserve stores, which are upscale versions of the coffee chain's typical stores. They are part of a high-end strategy the company has introduced to give customers a unique, hands-on experience at Starbucks.

The Bali store is "a destination showcasing our elevated Starbucks Reserve coffee and retail experience," said CEO Kevin Johnson in a statement, calling it another of Starbucks' "sensory-filled experiences."

"Bali is a wonderful tourist destination," said Scott Keller, senior vice president of store development and design for Starbucks. The company anticipates that the Bali location, which will employ 100 people and be the largest Starbucks store in Southeast Asia, will draw a lot of Asian tourists.

There are 185 Reserve locations globally, most of them in Asia. The Dewata sanctuary is the 10th Reserve location in Indonesia.

The Dewata store is also similar to Starbucks Roasteries, which are elaborate cafes that showcase the coffee-making process to customers. There are only four Roasteries, located in Seattle, Shanghai, Milan and New York City. Two more will open this year, with one in Tokyo and one in Chicago.

Starbucks (SBUX) wants to use the Roasteries and Dewata to teach its customers where and how coffee beans are grown, roasted and turned into cups of coffee. Keller said that tasting classes can help customers appreciate the distinction between different blends.

"It adds to the depth of experience," he said, and "heightens people's interest in coffee."

Starbucks is the largest buyer of Indonesian arabica coffee. The company opened a Farmer Support Center in Indonesia in 2015 to educate and support local farmers with donated seedlings. The sanctuary is designed to teach customers about that relationship, too.

The Starbucks stores in Indonesia, including the Dewata location, are licensed to PT Sari Coffee Indonesia.

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