August 6, 2010
SANTA MONICA, Calif., Aug 06, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Santa Monica-based Macerich(R) (NYSE: MAC), one of the nation's leading owners, operators and developers of regional shopping centers, today opened the new Santa Monica Place -- the 524,000 square-foot, three-level, open-air retail and dining destination just two blocks from the beach -- to huge crowds.
The new property opened with a high-wattage roster of 50+ retailers and restaurants, including Bloomingdale's, Barneys Co-op, Burberry, Louis Vuitton, kitson, Nike, CB2, Ted Baker, Juicy Couture, Hugo Boss and more plus an impressive lineup of six, chef-driven restaurants on the rooftop Dining Deck with views of the ocean.
On Aug. 27, Nordstrom will open at Santa Monica Place, alongside additional retailers including Tory Burch, followed by Tiffany & Co. in September. In all, the project is 97 percent committed and 92 percent leased.
"Today's opening of the new Santa Monica Place, certainly the highest profile new retail opening this year, demonstrates the power of a world-class property in a world-class market," said Arthur M. Coppola, Chairman and CEO of Macerich. "Many of the world's best retail brands are here, drawn by the outstanding quality of this project and the rare opportunity to locate in the highly desirable community of Santa Monica."
Macerich expects Santa Monica Place to become one of the premier shopping centers in the nation, joining other fortress Macerich centers such as Queens Center in New York City, Tysons Corner Center outside Washington, D.C., Washington Square near Portland, Ore., Broadway Plaza in Walnut Creek, Calif., Scottsdale Fashion Square in Arizona, The Shops at North Bridge in Chicago and Danbury Fair Mall in Connecticut.
"We are thrilled to be extending the Bloomingdale's brand in Southern California," said Michael Gould, chairman and CEO of Bloomingdale's. "We have created a shopping destination that reflects the lifestyle of anyone who lives west of the 405 from Malibu to Redondo Beach and everywhere in between."
Strong crowds, strong early sales
Crowds estimated between 3,000-4,000 waited in line to join City of Santa Monica officials and Macerich executives to open the new property Friday morning. Thousands of beach balls sailed into the crowd in place of a traditional ribbon cutting.
Santa Monica Place also represents a number of "firsts" for many brands, including new prototype stores for Nike, Hot Topic, Charlotte Russe and more; the first-ever Johnny Was retail store; the first Southern California location for Joe's Jeans; the first West Coast location for Skecher's Shape-Ups store and more. A number of the center's retailers are marking their new store openings at Santa Monica Place with celebrity-studded events, including Nike, Disney and Charlotte Russe.
Retailers from Skechers to Disney said they were likely to exceed sales projections during opening day. Barneys Co-op reported its first sale within five minutes of the center's opening.
"We have our dream line-up of co-tenancy here," said Paul Griffin, executive v.p. of U.S. retail for Ted Baker. "We have tremendous expectations for our Santa Monica Place store."
"With fantastic retailers and restaurants, gorgeous views and lots of exciting live entertainment and special activities, Santa Monica Place is designed for everybody - locals, visitors and the many people who work in and around Santa Monica," said Doug Roscoe, senior manager, property management, Santa Monica Place. "One of the most exciting elements is our third-level, rooftop Dining Deck, which offers ocean, city and mountain views and many different ways to enjoy them - whether our guests want a quick bite at our indoor-outdoor food court or a magnificent meal at one of our six, chef-driven restaurants."
Designed to suit its unique location in one of the world's best known beachside cities, Santa Monica Place incorporates many green-building features and is, in fact, a true recycling of the 1980s-era enclosed mall that Macerich has redeveloped as a three-story, open-air streetscape that complement its urban surroundings. The project was designed by Venice, Calif.-based architects, The Jerde Partnership; Dallas-based Omniplan was the executive architect.
Attracting top-level retailers
From the outset, the new Santa Monica Place has been a sizable draw for retailers, even as the industry moved through challenging seasons in 2008 and 2009. "Santa Monica Place demonstrates that retailers will respond to a project with vision, location and top-quality execution," said Macerich CEO Coppola. "We could not be more proud of the new Santa Monica Place."
In addition to anchor department stores Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom, retailers and restaurants signed on to be part of the new Santa Monica Place include: 7 For All Mankind Gymboree AllSaints Spitalfields Hot Topic Angl Hugo Boss Barneys Co-op Joe's Jeans BCBG Johnny Was