Department stores can be found in a few malls and on several high streets in the Ruhr Metropolis. The local department store landscape was once far more varied. Neglected facades, lack of investment and dated interior design led to a decline in popularity. With consumer tastes constantly in flux and online sales ravaging high streets in Germany too, closures and mergers continue to reshape inner city landscapes.
At the time of writing, all that remains of this once magnificent idea is a dozen or so of former Kaufhof and Karstadt stores, which have merged into one entity known as Galeria.
This style of shopping has seemingly passed its peak despite repeated attempts to adapt. Restructuring and a rebranding concept to attract clientele will reveal how popular they remain to local residents and expats across the Ruhr region.