Skye Group Joins CBRE!

Los Angeles – December 12, 2016 – CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE: CBG) today announced that it has acquired Skye Group (Skye), a leading provider of retail project management, shopping center development and tenant coordination services in the U.S. and Canada. This acquisition enhances CBRE’s position in the retail market by bolstering its retail project management service offerings. To read the full press release click here.

2016 – After 53 Years, King of Prussia is Finally One Mall

by Suzette Parmley, Staff Writer for – Updated: August 13, 2016

KingRendering-with-Labels2-937x383 of Prussia becomes one humongous mall on Thursday.

Normally, there’s a ribbon cutting at these things.

Not this time. Execs at powerhouse mall owner Simon Property Group plan to connect two ribbons. They’ll take one ribbon from the Plaza, one from the Court, and connect them at Savor, the new food pavilion, and announce the Plaza and Court as “no more,” only King of Prussia.

“We’re giving that to you early,” David Contis, president of Simon Malls, said in a giddy manner over the phone on Aug. 5. “It’s going to be pretty neat.”

A $250 million expansion – starting 21/2 years ago, but conceived more like five years ago – comes to fruition, to make the formidable Montgomery County mall that attracts 25 million visitors a year even more of a draw, say retail experts.

“The question that Simon Property had to answer was, ‘How does a brick-and-mortar mall compete in the digital age?’ ” said William J. Park, a partner at Deloitte & Touche L.L.P., who heads the firm’s retail division for the Philadelphia region. “With the proliferation of online sales and online-only markets like Amazon, we have seen an increase in the fragmentation of the retail market.”

Success “can, and will, include physical stores,” he said. “Premium malls like KOP need to focus on offering the customer not only a unique product offering, but also a unique experience.”

These include speed ramps and escalators at the mall’s state-of-the-art, 1,300-space parking deck to get in and out as quickly as possible.

There also are WiFi stations and concierges throughout Savor King of Prussia, its fancy food court with a half-dozen new restaurants, so you don’t miss a digital beat while dining.

LED lighting throughout the 2.9-million-square-foot property will save energy.

Some of the most exclusive brands in the world, including Jimmy Choo and Bottega Veneta, enliven the retail mix.

Contis recalled how he got a mandate from his boss, David Simon, chairman and CEO of Simon Property Group, after the company became majority owner of KOP mall in August 2011, acquiring and managing 96 percent.

“He said, ‘I want to connect the two [the Plaza and the Court]. Figure it out,’ ” Contis recalled. “No one until now has tried to figure out how to connect them.”

To accomplish that, it took about 60 contractors employing more than 1,900 people working inside the corridor with their respective tenants to build or expand their stores, while construction work continued on the exterior.

Simon built 250,000 square feet of building in the air, with 5,000 tons of steel on more than 900 piles into the ground to hold it up, to connect two massive buildings, four entrances, and two parking garages. The 155,000-square-foot connector ties it all together.

On the project’s price, Contis responded, “We’re on time, on budget, and spent exactly what we planned to spend. Connecting the two malls and including new retailers and restaurants will provide a level of excitement that today’s consumers are looking for.”

A recent study, called the Deloitte Retail Volatility Index, showed that retailers that offered consumers a more exciting and different shopping experience in person than they could get online had revenue growth rates of more than 10 percent during the 2010-2015 period, compared with 3.5 percent for the value-oriented stores.

As malls nationally feel pressure from the shuttering of anchor stores and shoppers’ discovering of the internet, Contis said KOP faced the opposite problem: It needed to build the corridor because of demand.

He estimated that 7 percent to 10 percent of tenant leases expire each year at KOP, and about half are renewed, leaving only 3 percent to 4 percent of space for newcomers.

“There was such demand for space at our property,” Contis said. “We had to be creative to determine how to do it and create a lot of space for tenants that wanted to be there, were new to the market, or wanted spaces for bigger flagship stores.”

Five of the 40 new retailers have already opened, including Diane von Furstenberg; 10 more will open Thursday, followed by staggered openings of four or five stores each in September, October, and November, and a handful in 2017. King Of Prussia Mall - Food Court

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2016 – Barneys Opens Its Stand-Alone Men’s Store

The men’s store is adjacent to the 9-year-old Barneys New York flagship in San Francisco at 2 Stockton St., and is located inside a former Ferrari boutique. The stand-alone men’s store — the only one in the Barneys chain — provides two levels of shopping in 19,000 square feet. The expansion is part of a larger, multi-year plan that includes renovation of the flagship, which opened with tremendous fanfare in 2007 and now contains womenswear, jewelry and home furnishings. Relocation of menswear from the fifth and sixth floors of the flagship to a separate building will allow space for the installation of a Fred’s restaurant, a signature eatery and destination for power lunches and weekend brunches in Barneys stores in New York, Beverly Hills and Chicago.

Why now? A growing interest in fashion among Millennial men, the more casual office dress codes of recent years, a sharp rise in menswear retail sales (in stores and online), and the growth of the local tech industry and high-net-worth individuals (primarily men) have combined to make this the right time for Barneys to take the plunge.

“The new standalone Barneys New York men’s store marks an achievement for Barneys New York and the San Francisco men’s fashion customers,” said Tom Kalenderian, executive vice president and general merchandise manager for men’s, in a statement. “This will be an opportunity for Barneys New York to expand the presentation and assortment of men’s fashion accessories, footwear and apparel to enhance the customer experience.”

Designed by an in-house team, the store has clean, modern lines and masculine colors — whites, grays and earth tones. The first level’s floor-to-ceiling abba gray marble is the backdrop for leather bags, sunglasses and other accessories. A wide, modernistic white staircase leads to a below-ground level with ready-to-wear, tailored apparel, home furnishings and shoes. (The lower level is connected to the women’s store’s lower level, where cosmetics, fragrance, candles and other home furnishings are located). For those who like to sit and mull their purchases, sofas and chairs in charcoal and dark earth tones lend a comfortably masculine touch. In a made-to-measure area, men’s formalwear and a dress shirt alcove can be found. Personal shopping services are also provided.

It’s not just women who covet designer labels these days: Barneys is a draw for lots of active men drawn by a selection of edgy, limited-edition sneaker collections, as well as apparel lines that include the store’s house brand, Exclusively Ours (XO), as well as Public School, Hood by Air, NSF, Fear of God and the NBA star-designer mashup of Russell Westbrook x Tim Coppens. Luxury designer labels carried include Isaia, Sartorio, Boglioli and Luciano Barbera, as wells as Saint Laurent, Valentino, Rick Owens and Thom Browne.

During Super Bowl 50, Barneys drew throngs of sports fans through its doors, and counts on more international tourists in the future. It’s providing competition for Saks Fifth Avenue, which will shutter its stand-alone men’s store on Post Street in October (and move menswear into its flagship store at Post and Powell), and for Neiman Marcus, which recently upgraded its menswear department. By 2017, when renovations are complete, Barneys can only hope to find it has become the Big Kahuna where retail is concerned, and Fred’s the place to see and be seen while digging in to a chopped chicken salad, or on second thought, tuna tartare with avocado, a surfer’s favorite lunch.


2015 – New City Mega-Complex Shows Chicago Is ‘On the Move,’ Mayor Says

~ By Mina Bloom | October 30, 2015 2:41pm | Updated on November 2, 2015 9:26am

 Mayor Rahm Emanuel making remarks at the grand opening of the mega-complex New City on Friday.

LINCOLN PARK — At the grand opening of the New City mega-complex, Mayor Rahm Emanuel called the $275 million development a “signal” that private companies want to invest in the city.

“People have this view of the city of Chicago. It’s on the move. It’s moving forward,” Emanuel told a crowd in the open plaza by one of the development’s many retailers, Dick’s Sporting Goods, 1538 N. Clybourn Ave., Friday morning.

He was joined by Ald. Walter Burnett Jr. (27th) and the project developers, Michael Drew with Structured Development and John Bucksbaum with Bucksbaum Retail Properties.

“It [shows] your confidence in a city that’s meeting its challenges head on and building a stronger, more vibrant future,” he added, speaking to the developers.

Emanuel’s remarks came after Drew said New City is an example of what private developers can do with the support of the city.

“The mayor will appreciate that this was done without a single dollar of TIF [tax increment financing],” Drew said, prompting Emanuel to stand up and shake his hand.

The 8½-acre project includes 380,000 square feet of retail space, a 1,100-car parking garage and a 19-story tower with 199 apartment units. It’s the largest project Structured Development has ever undertaken.

The land used to be the home of New City YMCA, which brought together residents from Cabrini-Green and affluent Lincoln Park. But when the housing development was torn down in the 1990s, membership at the YMCA began to dwindle. In 2007, the New City YMCA was torn down, and Structured Development bought the land to build a new development in its place. The project broke ground in 2013.

Several retailers and restaurants already are open or are about to open. The city’s largest Mariano’s in the complex earlier this week. Eateries such as Earl’s Kitchen & Bar, Yard House and Nando’s Peri-Peri all opened recently. Kings Bowl and ArcLight Cinemas both aim to open in early November.

Bucksbaum of Bucksbaum Retail Properties announced that Saks OFF 5th will be joining the development’s roster of retailers in the spring.

Of the 199 apartments, about 60 have been rented so far, Drew said. The modern apartment building offers studios, convertible units, one-bedrooms, two-bedrooms and three-bedrooms. Studios start at around $1,800.

Developer Peter Holsten also is planning to build a project just south of New City that will include 20 affordable units and 20 public housing units, which was one of the conditions Burnett Jr. set when he approved the mega-complex.

Burnett told DNAinfo Chicago that Holsten is applying for tax credits from the city and working on getting funding from the Chicago Housing Authority, but he’s short right now.

Burnett is proposing that LG Development Group include fewer affordable housing units in its proposed project in the 1400 block of North Orleans Street and give the money it would’ve used toward those units to Holsten’s project. That amount is $2.5 million, Burnett said.

“Our goal is to make sure that we bring opportunities to the community, but also that we don’t leave anybody behind,” Burnett said.

2015 – Dining District Debuts at Roosevelt Field Mall

~ by Jennifer Sloat | Long Island Trends | March 13, 2015

Roosevelt Field Mall Dining DistrictManhattan based eateries, al fresco dining and gluten-free options have turned the Roosevelt Field Mall food court into a dining destination for shoppers and for foodies.

Roosevelt Field Mall has cooked up some enticing and unique dining options for shoppers with the debut of the new Dining District, which launched its first eatery in late January.

The 50,000 square-foot area, is double the size of the old food court and seats 1,200. New skylights, outdoor space, soft seating and new exterior signing are some of the slick changes of the makeover, which began in October 2013. The old food court is being demolished and will be converted to retail with 10 new stores being added that are expected to open late this year around the holidays.

“It really is a totally different experience, so different than the old food court,” said Nancy Gilbert, Roosevelt Fields’ director of marketing. There are 17 restaurants slated to fill the space, most of which will have already opened. Seven restaurants from the old food court have been brought over: Wendy’s, Taco Bell, The Original Soupman Delicatessen & Grill, Sarku Japan, Johnny Rockets, Asian Chao/Sushi Fuji, Green Leafs and Bananas, and Cafe Spice.

The new additions include some Manhattan based restaurants that are making their Long Island debut as well as a few healthy dining options. In the healthy department, Maoz Vegetarian, is a quick serve vegetarian food restaurant with a fresh salad bar and falafel that also offers kosher foods. New comer, The Little Beet, has an all gluten-free menu with items that are made up of local, seasonal and natural ingredients. It is their first location on Long Island.

The snowy winter weather has provided perfect timing for the opening of the Melt Shop, a grilled sandwich shop, with loads of tres carnescomfort foods like grilled cheese, tater tots and milkshakes. The mall location is the eatery’s first move outside of Manhattan. Likewise for Patsy’s Pizzeria, which opened in New York city in 1933 and now have it’s first mall location. Tres Carnes, is another Manhattan eatery that will make its debut at the mall and features made-to-order tacos and burritos along with churro doughnuts. Also new are Charley’s Grilled Subs, known for its Philly cheesesteaks; Galangal Thai Cuisine Noodles, a Syosset based Thai restaurant and Potatopia, which puts a spin on potatoes and their toppings.melt shop

“It’s a unique mix that you don’t expect to find in a mall,” said Gilbert. “For a few it’s their first restaurant outside of the city. They decided if they were going to do it anywhere, it would be here.”

Most eateries have their own dining space making it less of a sea of endless tables. Along the outskirts of the Dining District are oversized chairs and sleek, raised planters are placed throughout. The result is a more upscale look and less cafeteria like.

That uniqueness may appeal not just to shoppers, but the lunch crowd from surrounding office buildings. Diners can gain easy access through an entrance at the top level of a brand new parking deck. The Dining District is located upstairs between Bloomingdale’s and Dick’s Sporting Goods and is part of a $200 million makeover, which includes a 100,000 square-foot Neiman Marcus, the first to open on Long Island. The last major renovation the mall had was in 1996, according to Gilbert, when they added Nordstorm’s.

-by Jennifer Sloat

Long Island Trends
March 13, 2015

Dining District Debuts at Roosevelt Field Mall