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Old 07-07-2010, 09:51 PM
 
10,136 posts, read 10,846,467 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teak View Post
There is a Borders in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where readers will stack piles of magazines next to the easy chairs and sit all day reading them. No purchases. How much longer they can stay in business, I don't know. There is a Japanese bookstore -Kinokuniya- that offers very few and mostly uncomfortable sitting places (benches) to discourage long-term sitters. MPH Bookstores also has easy chairs, but very few. The attitude in Malaysia appears to be that if the store is dumb enough to encourage reading without purchase, why not take advantage?
This is why I never bought magazines in B&N, too many of them were shopworn and mauled.
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Old 07-08-2010, 12:41 AM
 
2,322 posts, read 3,295,341 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tvdxer View Post
Barnes & Nobles has taken precisely that approach for ten years at the least and they seem to be doing just fine.
In Malaysia?? Where??

Malaysians are NOT readers, like Americans, so I doubt that B&N would last long here. When I go to Borders, usually on a busy weekend, there might be 1 person at the checkout counter over a 20-minute period, and 50 people sitting and reading magazines. It has been probably one year since I was at that Borders; I would be surprised if it still exists.

This is a country where the Prime Minister throws an open house each year during Hari Raya, and 50,000 people will show up, for the free food. Not exaggerating.
http://planetofthemonyets.blogspot.c...what-load.html
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Old 07-12-2010, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC & San Antonio, TX
790 posts, read 3,421,241 times
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Italy has La Feltrinelli, similar to B&N or Borders - good mix of books and gadgets/accessories, etc. However, I have yet to see one with a cafe inside or any real place to sit and read. There are far too many cafes on every corner for any self-respecting customer to expect a place to use the merchandise and then put it back in the name of "browsing". Also, customer service in most Italian stores is sorely lacking, so you could probably expect to be chastised just for standing around too long and reading a book or magazine.
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Old 07-12-2010, 08:36 PM
 
2,065 posts, read 3,666,389 times
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At least to my understanding a bookstore is not a library... if you want to read, browse quickly and buy whatever interests you, books, magazines, cds, etc.

This is not lacking customer service, it is just reminding the customer what kind of place that is. Again, a bookstore is not a library.
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Old 07-12-2010, 09:42 PM
 
Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA
7,653 posts, read 13,247,812 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Miaiam View Post
At least to my understanding a bookstore is not a library... if you want to read, browse quickly and buy whatever interests you, books, magazines, cds, etc.

This is not lacking customer service, it is just reminding the customer what kind of place that is. Again, a bookstore is not a library.
Not at Barnes and Noble. If they had those rules (or did not set up a comfortable environment for browsing), I would not go there, and therefore not buy half the books I do.

In my opinion, the U.S. model wins on this one. I'd rather have a vast "library" of new books at my disposal while consuming my Grande Vanilla Bean Blended Creme Frappucino in a comfortable club chair than buy an overpriced (books are more expensive in most Western European countries) book and read it while sipping a tiny, bitter cappuccino at a corner caffe with brash customer service. The second may be more "cool" and "hip" (as in hipster) than the first, but no doubt about it, the first offers me more than the second.
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:28 AM
 
2,065 posts, read 3,666,389 times
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tvdxer, I guess we will agree to disagree on this one...

I am not talking about the "model" on any place, I am just saying, regardless of the place, that some people spend hours reading books/magazines they are clearly not going to buy just to leave them at the store all worn for the buying customers. Again, that is not a library, if you want something, take a few minutes to browse and buy the books/magazines or not.

Another example: when one goes to a store, one tries clothes and decides whether one wants to purchase them or not - and one can always return them if one changes his/her mind - but one doesn't go for a walk in the mall/store for hours with them on to make sure they are nice/comfortable and then returns them all worn back to the store. That is what people do at bookstores and they think it is ok?!

In my opinion the chairs are there for a reasonable amount of time use, not for a customer who lingers at the bookstore for hours... and after reading leaves worn stuff and buys nothing. Obviously that is not the intention of the store!! The chairs are there as a courtesy, that is all.
Have you ever been to an attached cafe at a bookstore and someone - who has clearly been there for hours, with a pile of books/magazines and a drink half full - will look at you obliviously and be like "I have been here for hours but I am staying as long as I want bc I have a half full drink, so I am sorry but you won't have the opportunity to drink anything on this table for hours?!" Oh please...

As for the cappuccino, or the "hip" factor, that is another topic, not the one the OP suggested.

Last edited by Miaiam; 07-13-2010 at 06:38 AM..
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:57 AM
 
2,026 posts, read 2,699,262 times
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Unfortunately there are no bookstore/cafes near where I live. But I used to visit Borders often and browse books while drinking coffee, etc. If, for example, I was looking for a guide on touring France I would get one of each that was offered, get a comfy seat and a drink/snack and carefully look through each one. Then I would buy the best one. I'm not going to stand and quickly browse each book and regret my purchase later.
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Old 07-13-2010, 07:57 PM
 
2,322 posts, read 3,295,341 times
Reputation: 1982
Quote:
Originally Posted by yankinscotland View Post
Unfortunately there are no bookstore/cafes near where I live. But I used to visit Borders often and browse books while drinking coffee, etc. If, for example, I was looking for a guide on touring France I would get one of each that was offered, get a comfy seat and a drink/snack and carefully look through each one. Then I would buy the best one. I'm not going to stand and quickly browse each book and regret my purchase later.
And I would be the same way, if there were any seats available!! But what I find is that some people plant themselves in those easy chairs for hours at a time. One must arrive at the store opening time and have a friend to "save" your place when you need to use the toilet.

In Malaysia, the issue is partly the non-confrontational culture. A store clerk would never think of confronting a "customer" who was spending the entire day pawing through a stack of magazines. They pay for the cappuccino only because there is no way to borrow that.
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:49 PM
 
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Previous poster is absolutely correct.
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:17 PM
 
291 posts, read 569,869 times
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Bueno Aires's Librerķa El Ateneo Grand Splendid used to be a beautiful movie palace. Saved from the wrecker's ball, it is now one of the most majestic bookstores I've ever clapped eyes upon, a veritable temple to books.

El Ateneo Grand Splendid in downtown Buenos Aires is a spectacular bookstore that retains all the glamour of its former life as a 1920s movie palace, with a original balconies, painted ceiling, ornate carvings and crimson stage curtains. The Guardian named El Ateneo as one of the top ten bookshops in the world (along with Secret Headquarters):'Where else can you sit in a theater box and leisurely read a volume of Neruda, or sip a cortado where Carlos Gardel once performed?'"

Most beautiful bookstore - Buenos Aires's Librerķa El Ateneo Grand Splendid - Boing Boing
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