Business Insider Edition

Take a look inside Philip Morris International's IQOS flagship Sandton boutique - and yes, you can smoke inside the store

Bombi Mavundza , Business Insider SA
 Aug 11, 2019, 04:31 PM
IQOS, Phillip Morris International
Inside Philip Morris International's IQOS in Sandton City.
  • With over 60 IQOS boutiques internationally, Philip Morris International has officially launched its latest one in Sandton City.
  • Though its main purpose is for you to stop smoking, you can smoke inside the store.
  • There are 11 kiosks around the country.
  • And be warned, the Sandton store is hard to locate.
  • For more stories, go to Business Insider SA.

International cigarette company, Philip Morris International (PMI), has launched an IQOS boutique in Sandton City.

Prior to its swanky launch in July, the boutique has been operational in the Johannesburg mall for almost three months.

IQOS, which stands for 'I quit ordinary smoking', is a device engineered by PMI. It has been designed with the intention of helping people to kick their smoking habit.

IQOS, Phillip Morris International
Bombi Mavundza/Business Insider South Africa

Speaking to Business Insider South Africa, PMI's scientific engagement manager, Sharmila Parsotam, says going 'cold turkey' does not work for everyone. The IQOS device offers smokers an alternative that eventually helps them stop smoking for good.

The boutique:

It is located on the mall's lower level and is surprisingly hard to find. The boutique's minimalist design is beautiful, slick and super sophisticated. 

Everything in the boutique is accessible and uncomplicated.

IQOS, Phillip Morris International
The instore device that shows you the dangers of smoking at PMI's IQOS Sandton City boutique store. Bombi Mavundza/Business Insider South Africa

In addition to buying an IQOS device, you can watch testimonials on various screens inside the store, get a demonstration from one of the machines that simulate cigarette smoke into your lungs, and be put in touch with coaches who will check on you during the quitting process.

And you get discounts for getting "friends" in on the movement as well.

You are allowed to smoke inside the boutique, only if you use the IQOS device. It does not emit any smoke and will not set off the smoke alarms. Non-smokers around you will also not be subjected to any harmful fumes.

IQOS, Phillip Morris International
Bombi Mavundza/Business Insider South Africa


How the devices works:

"A danger with conventional smoking is the burning of the cigarette," says Parsotam. Dangerous fumes are released as a result of the burning of the cigarette.

"The IQOS does not burn the tobacco in the cigarette, but heats it instead."

IQOS, Phillip Morris International
Bombi Mavundza/Business Insider South Africa

Unlike alternative-to-smoking devices such as Vapes, users of the IQOS smoke real cigarettes.

The cigarette is placed into the device where it is heated. During this process, no smoke is emitted.

IQOS, Phillip Morris International
Bombi Mavundza/Business Insider South Africa

The smoker can draw smoke from the cigarette and blow it out as per usual. There is no strong smell and the smoke is lighter in colour. Small doses of nicotine are ingested by the smoker. The theory is that as the smoker's nicotine intake lessens, so does the habit in the long run.

IQOS, Phillip Morris International
Bombi Mavundza/Business Insider South Africa

There are almost 60 IQOS boutiques worldwide, as well as 11 kiosks across the country.

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