Harris Scarfe invest in State where it all began…

By Lauren Ferrone

Creating moments where customers can “pause to have a look” is the purpose behind an award-winning way-finding in-store design to make the shopping experience easier at Harris Scarfe.

The department store’s new in-store design creates a “lighter, brighter and easier way to shop” and was recently unveiled at South Australia’s Harris Scarfe Tea Tree Plaza.

Despite long-time national success and ongoing expansion, Harris Scarfe – which opened in 1849 in South Australia – is “investing in the State where it all began”.

“We are to South Australia what other departments are to other States, and we’re really proud of our history and heritage here,” says Simon Burrett, Harris Scarfe General Manager of Marketing.

With greater focus on “creating moments for customers in a shopping trip”, Simon says the wider aisles and award-winning directional and ‘how-to’ signage gives customers an easier way to navigate their way around the store.

“We’ve had customers say they didn’t realise we had all of these extra brands,” Simon says.

“We’ve have in fact always had them; it’s now just easier to find and flow around the entire store,” he adds.


Harris Scarfe Tea Tree Plaza’s new in-store design creates a “lighter, brighter and easier way to shop”

Investing more than a million dollars in the Tea Tree Plaza fit-out, Daniel Nikoleaff, Harris Scarfe State Area Manager, says the re-structure comes with growth in Adelaide’s northern suburbs.

“It’s the first full new concept store in our home State of South Australia, and we’re really investing in this area of Adelaide, on top of the significant investment we’ve made to our Rundle Place store,” Daniel says.

“The Tea Tree Plaza store is now in a position to showcase how our Adelaide customers want to shop and what a new age Harris Scarfe looks like,” he adds.

Harris Scarfe Arndale will be the second South Australian store to adopt the new concept design mid next year.


The design earned Harris Scarfe silver at the Melbourne Design Awards + Summit, in the Graphic Design – Environmental Category earlier this year.

“This is a worthy reward for the Harris Scarfe team in delivering our strategic plan to build a better department store that is specifically designed for our customer,” Simon says.

“Our approach to revisiting the retail concept has focused very much on the customer. We know they want to explore a bright, light and open layout. They want to be able to identify departments easily, and they love discovering our huge range of great brands,” he adds.

The design also features in the recently re-opened Harris Scarfe Southland in Melbourne, including other Harris Scarfe stores nationwide.


Kate Freebairn (Channel Ten); Romano Mercurio (Harris Scarfe Tea Tree Plaza Store Manager); Rebecca Peterson (Harris Scarfe Operations Manager); Jess Sedunary and Anne Hatchard (Adelaide Crows AFL Women’s Team); and Daniel Nikoleaff (Harris Scarfe Area Manager South Australia)


Harris Scarfe first opened in South Australia in 1849 when George Peter Harris and John C Lanyon formed a partnership, laying down the foundations for their business as Lanyon & Harris.

Lanyon & Harris opened its first premises in Hindley Street during 1850 in a large brick warehouse and operated as an ironmongery wholesaler. After five years of trading, Lanyon returned home to England leaving Harris as the sole owner of the business and the opportunity to change the name to Geo. P. Harris.

In 1857, George Harris welcomed George Scarfe and Richard Smith as major partners and so began Geo. P. Harris Scarfe & Co. In 1877, the company purchased its first Grenfell Street address, not too far from the current flagship store located in the busy Rundle Mall shopping hub.

The business continued to grow and in 1920 the company was rebranded to Harris Scarfe, the name we all know it as today.

Last year, Harris Scarfe breathed new life into the brand; creating a new logo, signage, including the opening of new stores and updating the look of its older ones.


Harris Scarfe’s history goes back more than a century with its first store in Adelaide