pink polo shirts Great Lakes Crossing reborn as outlet mall
New stores opening in time for the official “Celebration Weekend” Oct. 9 11 include Lord Taylor Outlet, Hugo Boss Factory Story, Talbot’s Outlet and Movado Company for the first time. side of the border. “About 20 percent of our customers come from Canada,” Taubman said.
In addition, Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Store, Wilson’s Leather Outlet, Lacoste Outlet, aerie Outlet by American Eagle and Swim and Sports Outlet will all be opening in coming weeks, he said.
“We had to have Ralph Lauren,” said Taubman, noting the family owned Taubman Co. has had long standing relationships with many of the retailers, such as Lord Taylor. “We have some great partners,” he said.
“We’re thrilled to debut Lord Taylor’s first outlet store in the state of Michigan and only their second location in the country,” Taubman said.
“Lord Taylor has been a popular favorite among shoppers at many of our malls over the years, and we’re sure this new concept will be successful at Great Lakes Crossing Outlets as well,” he said.
Rich Weiner, Lord Taylor regional vice president, said Lord Taylor was looking forward to the opening of the Auburn Hills store. “We have a great history in the Detroit market dating back to the late 1970s,” Weiner said.
The new outlet store will carry in season merchandise from all major product categories including women’s ready to wear, men’s clothing and sportswear, shoes, handbags, accessories, luggage and children’s clothing.
Warren based Art Van Furniture also will open its first store in a shopping mall in time for Thanksgiving, noting Great Lakes Crossing is one of the state’s busiest shopping centers
The new 43,000 square foot Art Van showroom will carry a full line of furniture along with an Art Van Pure Sleep mattress aisle,
electronics with Paul’s TV, a Scott Shuptrine Interiors design studio and Art Van Clearance Center.
ArtVan CEO Kim Yost said, “Being inside one of the state’s busiest malls will expose Art Van Furniture to millions of shoppers and we expect to see many new faces.”
Taubman said when Great Lakes Crossing first opened in 1998, it was considered more of a mall for eating and entertainment. It still is a major center for eating out, having added new restaurants such as Toby Keith’s, a new style Olga’s and Bar Louie. Sweet Lorraine’s also will soon open a spot in Great Lakes Crossing’s big food court, he said.
Since last October, it’s also been the home of Michigan’s largest IMAX theater.
Taubman said the shift toward the outlet concept has come gradually. “There were always outlet stores here,” Taubman said, noting that in the past couple of years the malls has added outlets stores from Nike, Michael Kors, Coach and Disney.
In addition, tenants such as Victoria Secret have changed over to outlet stores, he said.
Other stores, such as Forever 21, have expanded.
“Based on the success of the existing value and retail outlets and consumer demand for more fashion outlet options, it is the right time for this change to and outlet shopping center,” Taubman said.
Now, of the 185 tenants in the 1.4 million square foot mall, more than 70 are outlet stores of one kind or another. “We were always strong in the junior. Now we have more merchandise that appeals to the missy’s between 25 and 50,” he said.
Taubman declined to give out the occupancy rate at Great Lakes Crossing but noted sales revenue at the mall are up better than 10 percent so far this year.
Kimberly Savona, general manager of Great Lakes Crossing Outlets, said one major casualty this year was GameWorks, which closed stores nationwide after filing for bankruptcy. “They just didn’t keep up with the technology,” she said.
Meanwhile, Taubman Co. has filled the space with a Halloween store and is actively negotiating with another potential tenant.