Vaporsloft’s Grand Opening

VaporsLoft held a grand opening for their very first outlet located at Zamzama, Karachi. I was invited as The Pakistani Vaper and as one of the admins of the Pakistan Vaping Community to attend Vaporsloft’s Grand Opening on the 13th of August 2017 and the soft launch a day before. This is not the first store opening that I have attended so I had an idea of what to expect but to be honest the attention to detail and the shop decor managed to completely surprise me. It has the look and feel of those big vaping stores in the US or UK with ample seating, proper displays and a big collection of RDAs for testing flavors, oh, and not to mention a good ventilation system which I believe is very important for a vape shop although when you have a lot of people blowing clouds it does tend to get a bit hazy in there.

I sat down with the owner for a Q&A session about the shop and his plans during the soft launch on 12th August. You can read about that below before we move on to the opening details.

Q. How long has Vaporsloft been operating?

“We have been in the vaping business for over a year now. Vaping was back then something not many people were doing, its still relatively new to Pakistani market. However there exists a high market share that is ready to be explored hence we’re here.”

Q. When did you decide to open a vape shop?

“The idea was pretty much in the pipeline since we started the business online a year ago. See, we were already stocking stuff for delivery based on online orders. So the only thing needed was a storefront that would compliment the stocking area. As soon as we were able to locate our store we put the idea into action.”

Q. The market is pretty saturated with vendors, did you take that into account when planning the store opening?

“Yes, we did conduct a thorough market research. However we found that most vape shops lack variety and were far ‘orthodox’ in their approach. We tried to overcome such issues with our vape store lounge. And by the response we’ve had so far we think there’s a lot of potential still in the market.”

Q. Tell us about the store? What sets it apart from the other vape stores in the country?

“Well to start with we are present in a very convenient location. Also the variety that we offer at Vaporsloft is second to none. We have most e-liquids you can find online in any foreign store. Moreover the flavor bar allows for users to try new flavors before buying them – this applies on the complete range of eliquids we carry and not just a few selected ones.”

Q. I was there at the opening in the capacity of the admin of the Pakistan Vaping Community and The Pakistani Vaper. I noticed you stock a lot of flavors that no other vendor in Pakistan has. Is that a fluke or a business strategy?

“As mentioned before, we conducted a thorough research of the market. We found that most vape shops lacked the flavors that customers were looking for. Which was letting customers down, so they would order from international chains. We planned to tap that market, even though not all flavors will sell, still we have most flavors, some in large and others in small quantities to meet any surprise demands. We believe in retaining all our customers and we pledge to provide them with everything that we can to win them over.”

Q. Any concerns about the vaping industry in Pakistan? If yes then what in your opinion should be the steps to correct them.

“Yes. The combustible tobacco mafia is very prevalent in Pakistan. Even though vaping has been here for quite some time, it is still looked down at. Most people have misconceptions about vaping altogether that it might be worse, if not equally hazardous. Vaporsloft stands against these odds and we encourage the vaping industry to join hands in educating the masses of how vaping is a very health effective substitute over combustible cigarettes.”

Q. The location of your store seems to have parking issues, how do you see that as a drawback?

“Nothing is impossible and where there’s a will there’s a way. We’ve already thought about that and planned accordingly. In the next few days or so we are to introduce our very own valet service that would out any concerns related to parking.”

Q. Do you have a message to all the readers out there?

“As they say, you have to try it to believe it. Always make an informed decision. Head over to Vapors Loft and try a vape before owning one. Dont just make up an assumption because someone said so. Happy Vaping.”

 

First Impressions of the store

 

Located at a busy Zamzama road right opposite the Vape Therapy outlet it raises eyebrows because of parking woes but Vaporsloft has promised customers a valet service to solve the issue. The shop features a set of informative info-graphics on your left just near the entrance which is something I would like all major vape stores to carry as well.

Vaporsloft's grand opening

As you can see from the images, the store is big, probably the biggest vape store in Pakistan although Artisan Tariq road might tie with it for that honor. Keen eyed readers will immediately see the big Heisenberg decal on the wall granting a unique aesthetic to the shop. Particularly pleasing was the ample seating and roomy interior ensuring you could move about the shop with ease even when it is full of customers. The large number of people blowing plumes of vapor managed to fog up the place but I noticed that after a certain point the fogged up interior did not fog up any more probably due to the number of exhaust points running full time.

Vaporsloft is keeping in line with the current market trend of using RDAs to have customers sample any flavor they wish from the shop. I saw almost 40 odd velocity rdas at the outlet out of which a few were being continuously rebuilt as customers kept asking to taste all the flavors they had on offer. Being a dual coil man myself I did not like the single coil builds but they do the job, still, ill stick to my dual coil rdas any day of the week.

There is a unique offering at the store which I have not seen in any other shop yet. Right near the entrance they have one of those fridges with the transparent door used to chill soft drinks and water bottles. While at the shop you can order soft drinks and bottled water which is very important to keep you hydrated as you keep vaping. If they love you enough they will even accept an order for tea/green tea which they procure from a chai wala near by. I have confirmed from Vaporsloft that plans are underway to soon offer beverages such as coffee, tea, green tea, hot chocolate and cappuccino in the store as well. I Know I will be taking my coffee black to help reset my taste buds whenever I am at the store tasting new flavors.

The Staff

 

I was impressed with the staff who were knowledgeable about vaping and eager to learn from the local veterans. I particularly enjoyed the staff letting us sample some new flavors for our opinion so they could determine if the flavors are worth stocking and asking us what flavors we would like to have them stock. There is a familiar face in the bunch and the Artisan Shehbaz regulars will instantly recognize Asad who now dons a VaporsLoft t-shirt and features heavily in the videos released by Vaporsloft.

Cloud Comp

What vape meet is complete without a friendly cloud comp and vaporsloft did not disappoint. They brought out a big banner that had markings going up to 10 feet and featured funny quips at every foot point. The cloud comp which was dominated by a steel lunged friend of mine who was somehow capable of inhaling for 6 seconds non stop using dual juggernaut coils at 100w on his rda ensuring his exhales went further than the 10 foot mark. The rest of the competitors managed to reach the 6 foot to 8 foot mark which is impressive as well and they might have won if this iron lunged monster wasnt participating. He bagged the prize of a VTC Dual Kit.

It makes me happy to see Pakistan is not lagging behing in the vaping world as more and more stores start opening in different corners of the Country. I consider these stores as leaders in the war against smoking especially since a big bulk of the smoking population in our society is not so tech savvy as to visit websites to learn more about vaping and eventually make the transition. Having a well trained and courteous staff is imperative for any store and hopefully with time customers at Vaporsloft will post on PVC about their experience at the store just as they do for other stores.

Update 30/08/2017

I just found out that Vaporsloft also offers coil building, rewicking and battery rewrapping services. While the first two are staples at all artisan outlets and although I would never avail coil building and rewicking services; it is a blessing to finally find someone offering battery rewrapping at their outlets. Battery wrapping wear out over time and many vapers keep using them even though it is dangerous because they dont know how to rewrap their batteries or are too lazy to do so. Now you can get your batteries rewrapped at Vaporsloft for Rs 300 each and have your coils rebuilt for Rs 200. I hope the battery rewrapping trend catches on with the other vendors as well.

Ill leave you with a stellar highlight reel recently released by Vaporsloft. They have promised a proper video containing interviews and voice overs will be launched as soon as it is ready and ill be sure to update this article with the video whenever it is launched.