Harry Potter chain eyes first Dutch stores


The Wizard Store, a Belgian chain dedicated to the magical world of Harry Potter and his friends, is looking to expand to the Netherlands and the Dutch-speaking part of Belgium. Next month, a first store in Kortrijk should pave the way.


New generations

The Wizard Store originates in the southern, French-speaking part of Belgium and sells gadgets like wands, cosplay outfits and sweaters in the Harry Potter theme. Even ten years after the eighth and last Harry Potter film was released, the franchise is still hugely popular, owner Marie Durnez tells Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws. "The original die-hard fans are now showing their children around in the universe of the films", Durnez explains the lasting success. "As we saw a lot of Dutch-speaking Belgians come to our stores in Wallonia, we have decided to expand to the North."


Durnez' ambition, however, is not limited to the store in Kortrijk: she plans to open no fewer than six stores in the Dutch-speaking market: on top of the Kortrijk store, she has plans for openings in Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent in Belgium and for Amsterdam and Rotterdam in the Netherlands.


Surprisingly, after all this time there is still only one 'official' Harry Potter store in the whole world - and it only opened two months ago, in New York.