Shopping Centers Today

DEC 2018

Shopping Centers Today is the news magazine of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)

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D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 8 / S C T 73 Bonberi & Fleurotica was one of three stores to open in September of street-level shops between West 10th and West 11th streets. The firm jumped at the chance to acquire some irreplaceable real estate at a really attractive price, says Michael Goldban, Brookfield's head of retail leasing. "This section of Bleecker Street is the quintessen- tial West Village urban experience," Goldban said. Bleecker Street boasts a history rich in live music and culture, through venues that have for decades presented some of the greats in folk, jazz, blues and rock music, as well as standup comedy. More recently, the tree-lined street had become a luxury shopping destination known for the presence of such international brands as Burberry, Michael Kors and Ralph Lauren. But the area began suffering as rents skyrocketed while online competition got progressively tougher, resulting in a wave of store closings. Brookfield has stepped into this void in a bid to revitalize the area, teaming up with Skylight Studios, a New York City–based strategic consul- tant and developer of events spaces, to achieve that vision. "With [Skylight's] help, we have curated this really dynamic, exciting collection of brands — some old and some new — that are really authentic to the meaning of Bleecker Street and the West Village," said Goldban. And these new retail concepts are emblematic of where Brookfield thinks retail needs to go to stay relevant in the future, he says. These Brookfield-owned store- fronts are now fully leased to five ten- ants. The first of these was Margaux, an e-commerce retailer specializing in women's footwear, which opened in July. Three others opened in mid-Sep- tember: Bonberi & Fleurotica, which combines Fleurotica's floral design workshop and sales space with the plant-based nutrition and holistic life- style offerings curated by Bonberi (a concept from blogger Nicole Berrie); Prabal Gurung, an internationally recognized couture designer from Nepal who has created a lounge space for women's fashions; and Slightly Alabama, which designs and produc- es handmade leather accessories. Not only does Slightly Alabama founder Dana Glaeser make leather products in this space, but he also This year Brookfield Properties acquired square feet of street-level shops between West 10th and West 11th streets 24,000

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