Liquor World, located in Las Vegas, NV, is a 10,000-square-foot facility with an extensive selection of wine, spirits, beer, mixers and accessory items. It also contains a 1500-square-foot wine and craft beer bar, climate-controlled wine lockup, cigar humidor and walk-in beer cave. It’s one of five locations around the Las Vegas resort corridor, with six more locations in the southwest part of the Las Vegas valley.
During the pandemic, the state deemed liquor stores nonessential. Nevada was one of only two states to do so. Matthew Lilley, general manager, recalls, “We were completely closed down for almost 21 days. After that, we were allowed a temporary delivery license (delivery was previously illegal).
This presented its own challenges because we had to build out a delivery platform and logistics in days. Once stores re-opened, delivery remained but has since wound down and business has returned to a more normal cadence.”
While dealing with all these challenges, Liquor World has expanded with a number of new locations. “We had a lot going on in 2021,” Lilley says. “We opened three new locations, one new on-premise location and relocated another store. We’re slowing down in 2022 as we regroup with the rapid expansion behind us and push forward, but we’ll pick back up in early 2023.”
According to Lilley, the process of expansion has been quite involved. “It was really challenging. Material costs went through the roof, fixtures had backlogs as far back as 48 weeks and permitting and licensing was delayed. It was very difficult to navigate as it was changing daily. We had four projects all going on at the same time at one point and it was a real balancing act, but we have a strong core team that was able to pull together to get everything done and get the stores opened successfully.”
When asked to define success in the industry, Lilley stressed the importance of customer loyalty. “Without customer loyalty, it’s difficult to keep growing your business. We achieve that through fair pricing, excellent selection and personalized, knowledgeable service in all of our locations.”
He maintains that Liquor World sets itself apart with convenience and “small store service.” “We dont carry everything, but we carry the right things people are looking for,” he says. “We focus on having new items as they hit the marketplace and make sure our customers know we have the latest and greatest. We have trained beverage specialists in our locations that are focused on nothing but customer service on the selling floor. We are also the largest retailer of private barrel spirits in Nevada.
Jamie Stafford is the editorial associate at Beverage Dynamics. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Read her recent piece, Why 2022 is the Summer of RTDs.