I visited the Rose Biketown in Bocholt, Germany and want to tell you about my experience.
My better half and me are searching for new bikes. We have stumbled upon Rose Bikes. Rose is a german bike manufacturer, mainly shipping bikes to its customers. This means that (without some exceptions), it is not possible to go to a store, choose your bike, start a test ride and take it with you. On the other hand, their prices are very competitive and they allow you to customize your bike heavily.
But what if you, like me, have no idea of frame geometry, gears or tires? Fortunately Rose has a store at their headquarter in Bocholt: The Rose Biketown.
Bocholt lies in Germany, west of Münster and north of Duisburg in Northrhine-Westphalia. As we wanted some days off anyway, we’ve decided to vist the Münsterland and Rose.
Rose seems to be quite popular for customers from the Netherlands. We saw a lot of cars with yellow license plates. Also all signs are in german and dutch.
A normal appointment takes about 1,5 hours. As we were 2 persons, they planned 2 hours for us.
Our appointment was for 2pm, but we were there earlier to take a look around.
The first impression: Wow. The Biketown is a very modern building, both from outside and inside. It has 6000 square meter (~64 000 square foot) and has any bike available from Rose. There are racing bikes, road bikes, trekking and mountain bikes. Plus -of course- e-bikes.
Additionally there is a large service area for maintenance or repairs on your existing bikes. Plus another area if your are picking up your new bike at the Biketown.
The shopping area is flooded with clothes and a near endless selection of accessories like peddals, bells, saddles or drink bottles.
The selection -like most of the bikes- is intended for ambitious bikers or pros, therefore it is more in the upscale price range. Nevertheless they have a very good price-performance ratio.
Rose offers equipment from a broad range of well-known brands, but has also an own brand, where they offer a lot of stuff for bikers.
All visitors are shown on a screen. So were we. After checking-in we were told which our consultant or sales person would be.
Ekrem started with introducing himself. He has worked with bikes for many years and is riding bikes in his free time. Afterwards he wanted to known what we are searching for what we are planning to do with our bikes.
As we are planning to do bike treks with a slightly higher-than-average speed (At least higher than our average), but want to the prepared to bad roads or even going offroad, we need a fast but robust bike.
We went to the trekking and mountain bikes. Ekrem explained the different bike types and their advantages and disavantages for the different use cases. We have ended with a trekking bike for me and a gravel for my girlfriend. Then we have been measured in order to find the perfect bike size for us. Additionally we got our butts measured to find a fitting saddle size.
Eventually Ekrem selected bikes according to our wishes and sizes and we went off for a test ride around the block. I quickly realized that I don’t want a racing handle bar, but my girlfriend was very happy with it. Afterwards we went back inside to talk about the details.
In general “our” bikes are available with an aluminium or carbon frame. Carbon is lighter than aluminium and comes in our cases with a nicer paint. Unfortunately the premium is about 600€ (But the bike comes with with some superior parts too. In my case I even get a better groupset). There is also the possibility to make the bike fit for everyday usage: We can add mud guards and pannier racks for example.
And this is where Rose really shows their strength: Almost everything on the bike is customizable. You need different tires or wheels? No problem! Bottle cages and bells? Select one from the large selection in the shop or browse the shopping area! Everything to make this bike your bike.
At that point the 2 hours were over. But instead of just ending the appointment, we got a complimentary voucher for a coffee, so that Ekrem and we can have a short break.
After over 3,5 hours we left without purchasing a bike. Too many information and impressions overwhelmed us, so we needed time to decide.
As we were still in the area and we really liked the bikes, we went back to Biketown 2 days later. Ekrem had already customers, so we searched another employee (Keep in mind, that without appointment you might have to wait quit some time until an employee has time for you). Adam introduced himself and we told him what we’ve already learned and which points are still open for us.
This time we focused a bit more on the bike geometry, as the aluminium and carbon bikes are slightly different. Especially for my girlfriend.
As we wanted a quote this time and the online configurator does not offer every possibility, we used Rose’s system.
The bike was already set. As the bikes does not come with pedals, we needed a pair. We have decided to take ones we can use with normal shoes as well as with clip-in shoes. Additionally we wanted mud guards, pannier racks, lights, bells and bottle cages. We walked with Adam through the shop and selected the parts we wanted.
With the quotes we left after another 2 hours. If we have decided, we can order them via phone or e-mail.
Now we have to decide whether we want an aluminium or carbon bike and if we want to swap some parts.
Conclusion: Rose is a paradise if you know what you need or if you required high-end parts. For us noobs, a good service and consultation is crucial and that is exactly what we’ve got twice. Rose bike surely are not the cheapest, but if you compare the prices, Rose is not that far away and you normally get the better parts here and the service is outstandingly good.