No Starbucks in Italy?

Old Jan 5th, 2016, 11:35 AM
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And Yes, it will be my last post.>

Why?
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Old Jan 5th, 2016, 12:07 PM
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It seems to have been your first post, too. So why the fuss?
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Old Jan 5th, 2016, 12:11 PM
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"that says it all"
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Old Jan 5th, 2016, 05:41 PM
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Starbucks opened fifteen or twenty coffee places in Melbourne, and all but two failed - the survivors being at Melbourne airport, and a well touristed place downtown.

I think the endless choice at Starbucks does not suit the Australian market and drove me, at least, nuts.

Size: regular, large or grande
Milk: soy, low fat, regular, goat, sheep
Coffee: decaf, African, South American
Topping: cocoa, candy sprinkles, cinnamon, garlic, whatever
Food: cookie, muffin, doughnut.

And so it goes - and all I want is a coffee. I don't want to sit in Starbucks in a lounge chair surfing the internet, or just generally "hanging out" (the last resort for the chronically bored and aimless).
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Old Jan 5th, 2016, 06:17 PM
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Peter, I find that unusual that Starbucks failed in Melbourne. I go to Australia on business and find they have a few coffee house chains, like Gloria Jeans and The Coffee Club, that also do the caramel/frappe/latte/grande/crema/soy/decaf/muffin thing.
I think the failure of Starbucks could simply be their coffee didn't taste good - or the overt American-ness of it - which Australians can resent. Just something I pondered as I read your post.
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Old Jan 5th, 2016, 08:48 PM
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Blueeyedcod, I think it is more to do with being spoiled for choice for really good coffee in Australia. Yes there are a few chains like Gloria Jean's but there are also so many independent coffee places everywhere you go and they make delicious coffee for the most part. And most adults were turned off the whole Starbucks model I think. Teens seemed to like the novelty of it.
Their coffee just really isn't very good.( having said that, I am not a big fan of Gloria Jeans either)

Not sure of the American-ness resentment as Australians seem to like McDonald's and KFC .
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Old Jan 6th, 2016, 12:16 AM
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hi gooresh, welcome to Fodors. Yes this is an English based website though we do have multi-lingual people on-board and there is a lot of joshing on this site, so not only do we poo-poo people who speak with different vernacular but also are interested in spotting what the writer's native language is, I'm guessing not a European one, but who knows?

Yes our manners online are often different from those we use in skin-2-skin and sometimes what you write is not what you really mean.

To my shame I speak only 3 languages and one of those is not great, still another year and I can start on number 4.

I hope you come on back.
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Old Jan 6th, 2016, 01:11 AM
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Blueeyedcod, I think Raincitygirl & Peter have a fair grasp on why Starbucks failed in Australia.

We're really just not that heavily into coffee chains, and Gloria Jeans' ( probably our biggest franchise) is presence dwarfed many times over by independent coffee shops & bars. There are other smaller chains ( 3 Beans & Jamaica Blue spring to mind ) but they're usually only found in shopping centres.

I don't think it has anything to do with Starbucks' origin - just that they didn't do their market research properly & misjudged their target.

Peter_S ... We're doing a little GTG in Melb 17 Jan. More in the Lounge if you'll be in town.
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Old Jan 8th, 2016, 02:00 AM
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I've just been to Bologna for 4 days. It's a wonderful, vibrant and very old city with lots of history and historical buildings. One never grows tired of all the porticos; the arcades are simply wonderful to walk under.

As for the coffee, it was cheap and good. The grounds were quickly brewed in the pistons and served in proper cups. Ordering a simple cup of coffee will get you an espresso. I saw one espresso that had perhaps three drops of piping hot coffee so be prepared. I usually ordered cafe latte and quite often wished the servings were bigger because they were delicious to drink.

Starbucks? Nope! I didn't see one and I explored nearly every nook and cranny of the city.
McDonald's? Of course.
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Old Jan 8th, 2016, 03:34 AM
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>>I don't know if they are worried about Starbucks tarnishing their food image so much as wondering why they would need it.<<

As with so many popular things, it's not about need.
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Old Jan 8th, 2016, 03:15 PM
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>as with so many popular things, its not about need.<

Sure, but what might be popular here in North America doesn't always translate elsewhere as was seen in Australia when Starbucks flopped there.

My point was why would you need Starbucks in a place like Italy with great coffee everywhere you turn?
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Old Jan 8th, 2016, 03:38 PM
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Been once in a Starbucks - in front of Versailles castle..

I like to be snob when I get this kind of stuff.

I went into 3 Hard Rock coffees : one in Prague, one in Us somewhere and one in Koeln I think. Would never go if there was one in Bruxelles.

Last time I went to a Pizza hut was in Cairo, just in front of the Sphinx. Who cares about pizza then ? Who cares about coffee in front of Versailles...

Now saying that people reject Starbucks or whatever brand because it is US based is totally stupid.
If a concept fails somewhere, it is because it is not adapted to the country, not because of its origin - unless real exceptions.
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 06:39 AM
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My point was why would you need Starbucks in a place like Italy with great coffee everywhere you turn?>

Starbucks is a lot more than the quality of coffee - it's the atmosphere and laissez-faire feeling about sitting down even if you buy nothing.
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 07:28 AM
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Sure PalenQ, but what if that doesn't translate to other countries, or they already have their own places with great atmosphere AND great coffee?
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 07:59 AM
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Starbucks doesn't have a single novel thing to offer in Italy in terms of either coffee or atmosphere. In fact, in terms of atmosphere, it's downright depressing compared to the average Italian café.
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 03:32 PM
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"Starbucks doesn't have a single novel thing to offer in Italy in terms of either coffee or atmosphere. In fact, in terms of atmosphere, it's downright depressing compared to the average Italian café."

Are you including that if you sit down to have your coffee in Italy it will usually cost you double? Just curious.
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 03:41 PM
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Even if you sit down, it doesn't cost what it costs for a burnt Starbucks coffee in the USA, IME. Yes, it costs more than standing at the bar, but in any case, you have all day to hang out if you so want. I can't imagine hanging out at a Starbucks anywhere for the "atmosphere." Maybe if I were a 20-something and needed a place to hook up to WiFi, but there are places all over Europe to do that these days, too.
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 03:57 PM
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Burnt Starbucks? How do they burn espressos, lattes, Americanos or other espresso drinks? If you prefer espresso drinks, why on on earth would you order brewed coffee at Starbucks when the offer comparable espresso drinks? Have you ever had one, or just guessing?

And for tourists, aren't Italian coffee bars as much for wifi as Starbucks? I'm not getting why you bring that up as if it were exclusive to Starbucks.

Don't get me wrong. I don't need Starbucks and am perfectly happy with local Italian coffee bars, but it seems there is some totally false prejudices going on here.
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Old Jan 9th, 2016, 04:34 PM
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There can be a problem when a business that performs well in one country tries to export its business model to another country.

Costco is not doing all that well in Australia, Masters hardware is bleeding cash, and Starbucks failed in most of the locations where outlets were established. KFC and McD's have had to change their offering to suit the local market.

I think the Starbucks model works in the USA and Canada, because they were the first (or among the first) places to offer coffee that did not come out of a Silex.

In Melbourne, the first espresso machine appeared in 1956, so Starbucks was very late on the scene. No other chain offers the couches, low tables and the "linger all day" vibe that differentiates Starbucks. An owner can't "rent" a table for hours for the price of a single coffee.

The first espresso machine was built and patented in 1884, in Turin, so Starbucks are about 150 years off the pace in Italy, and maybe can't accommodate the "coffee and brioche at the bar" Italian habit.

Or maybe Italians have an aversion to paper cups, or drinking a litre of coffee while they walk around.
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Old Jan 10th, 2016, 10:13 AM
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St-cirq- eons ago when you were in your 20s in say a college town you'd been a fixture probably at Starbucks or similar place - you got it right - 20s types and Italians of that age IMO would flock to Starbucks like they do McDonalds - WI-FI yes but that's not the draw no more. As for burnt coffees I'd wager you have not been in any Starbucks in a long time - like said just above how do you burn a latte or other more than plain coffee, which relatively few of today's younger generation even drinks in those places.

The thing that gets me is Italy's attempt to keep them out rather than let in new competition in a coffee-mania country.
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