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Old February 1st, 2012, 02:11 AM   #61
Timothy
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This kind of straddles two threads (Here and the Wintergarden thread - but I'll post it here because it's more about shopping and less about construction/design).

Quote:
Mining boom helps strike up the brands
by: Mike O'Connor From: The Courier-Mail February 01, 2012 12:00AM

RETAIL THERAPY: Chris McCluskey believes the new Wintergarden Centre will open on schedule and raise the retail bar in Brisbane. Picture: Campbell Scott Source: The Courier-Mail
IT'S become the battle of the brands in the CBD as the world's leading labels are drawn by big-spending, cashed-up mining workers and the $100 million redevelopment of the Wintergarden Centre.

Chris McCluskey is the development director of the Wintergarden project and in career terms, admits he's been having the time of his life.

"There aren't too many projects like this where you control a large proportion of a city block. There's a billion dollars worth of real estate on this one block," he says of that section of the Queen Street Mall between Albert and Edward streets.

"That doesn't come along all the time. We've removed 25,000 tonnes of steel and concrete from this site. It's been a tremendous challenge.

"Our objective was for a world-class shopping centre with a high quality finish and high quality tenants. You'll see tenants such as Coaches, Tommy Hilfiger and Ben Sherman and the message we get from these overseas retailers coming to Australia is that the customer is king.

"It will be a different shopping experience," he promises.

The business case for the blue chip brands to open in Brisbane, says McCluskey, is now overwhelming.

"Chanel has opened up here and Louis Vuitton. At the QueensPlaza centre, they've remixed their tenants and taken a further step upmarket. You've got Apple committed to MacArthur Chambers across the road. There's Hermes down in Edward St and Gucci going across the road and Ralph Lauren is there."

The Brisbane market, he says, is different to those in the other east coast states.

"You have to recognise that Queensland and Western Australia are different to what's happening in the rest of the country. These top brands have not been here before because there has not been the critical mass of wealth for them to sustain profitable businesses.

"Because of what's happening in the mining resources sector, metropolitan Brisbane has benefited and that's what is driving it. The brands look at the turnover other people are doing and see that there's an irresistible business case for being in the Brisbane CBD," explains McCluskey. "Wintergarden will lift the benchmark further."

He remains confident the Wintergarden will open on time. "We set ourselves the aim of opening at the beginning of April and we're going to do that - the third of April. We're more than 85 per cent leased with a lot of retailers positioning themselves for when the economy does recover," he says.

I tell him that I have heard of tenants being lured away from the Myer Centre by the Wintergarden's agents and McCluskey smiles.

"I don't know about that," he says. "All I can say is that we've been fortunate that a number of tenants have chosen to come to the Wintergarden who were previously located elsewhere in the Queen Street Mall area."

But he concedes that confidence in the retail sector has diminished.

"Corporate retailers, mum-and-dad retailers and all the ones in between - the lack of confidence is right through the orbit of businesses but having said that, people recognise that the Queen Street Mall gets 25 million visitors a year and that if you're going to trade retail, you've got to trade here."

The full impact of online shopping, he warns, has yet to be felt in Australia.

"We're from three to five years behind how it's going in America and Europe," he says.

"The idea there is that high street retail becomes your showroom. You don't expect to generate huge sales from the high street retail front door.

"You've got a parallel platform that sells your gear and you control all of your proprietary goods and services online. You've got a front door and people go in and have a look but they'll make their buying decision in the quiet of their home.

"People still like to go to beautiful, airconditioned shopping centres and our buildings have to be memorable and call people back to them and Wintergarden will do this."

Once the Wintergarden is complete, McCluskey and his team move on to the next stage of the project, the redevelopment of the site of the former Regent Theatre.

When that is complete, the team will design work on the renovation of the Broadway shopping centre on the other side of the mall.
Source:http://www.couriermail.com.au/ipad/m...-1226258800730
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Old February 1st, 2012, 02:32 AM   #62
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That last line of the article is very encouraging:

Quote:
When that is complete, the team will design work on the renovation of the Broadway shopping centre on the other side of the mall.
Also, was Tommy Hilfiger previously announced? We know about Coach and Ben Sherman, along with Lee Jeans and Rockport, but I don't recall hearing Tommy Hilfiger previously.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 02:34 AM   #63
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TH is so bad. ugh.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 09:05 AM   #64
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Tommy Hilfiger in Germany was much, much better than here. The store designs and concept was much better executed than any TH stores I've seen here - so if we get even half of what they've got in Germany - I'll be happy.

On a side note - the Esprit stores over there are also much better. Why is mid-level shopping in Australia so boring?
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Old February 1st, 2012, 09:14 AM   #65
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Agree that most of the Espirit stores here are bland. Haven't been to Chadstone (it's supposed to be a flagship) but the store on Pitt Street is quite good.

I'm keen to find out the rest of the retail tenants. I wonder why they arent unveiling the retail tenants until it opens? You'd think they'd want to create a bit of fanfare for the opening?
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Old February 1st, 2012, 10:36 AM   #66
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Agree that most of the Espirit stores here are bland. Haven't been to Chadstone (it's supposed to be a flagship) but the store on Pitt Street is quite good.

I'm keen to find out the rest of the retail tenants. I wonder why they arent unveiling the retail tenants until it opens? You'd think they'd want to create a bit of fanfare for the opening?
Oh **** Tommy Hil was mentioned in this thread sorry, I mentioned it in luxury brands (slaps) Chadstone Espirit is ok just a bit bigger than QP really. Australian's just have a casual attitude mostly to dressing, it is great to afford Xile, Versace, Herringbone blah blah but I guess we don't all buy at the end of the week every week their stuff. Beer is more, sadly, what Australians want.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 10:39 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by nathandavid88 View Post
That last line of the article is very encouraging:



Also, was Tommy Hilfiger previously announced? We know about Coach and Ben Sherman, along with Lee Jeans and Rockport, but I don't recall hearing Tommy Hilfiger previously.
Oh god yes let it be true. It's amazing that Butter Beats and Garfunkle survive on the third floor. I'm showing my snobbish side but it's had it's day like Toowong, time for a major overhual but that will be 2015 or so. Scotch and Soda seems to do well, but the rest of it, it's tacky and being abandoned, it will come to a point where it will be changed but, anyway, time.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 10:47 AM   #68
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Dirtbox and Bessie Head do a good trade as well.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 10:49 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy View Post
Tommy Hilfiger in Germany was much, much better than here. The store designs and concept was much better executed than any TH stores I've seen here - so if we get even half of what they've got in Germany - I'll be happy.

On a side note - the Esprit stores over there are also much better. Why is mid-level shopping in Australia so boring?
It's not just here, though. Same thing in Canada and the US. TH in general has run it's course (the 90s).
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 12:25 PM   #70
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Dirtbox and Bessie Head do a good trade as well.
VERY good to hear they do.
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 01:45 AM   #71
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Here's a Courier Mail article regarding the Wintergarden. Another newly announced brand – Sambag

Quote:
WOMEN'S fashion retailer Sambag will open its first Queensland store in the $100 million Wintergarden redevelopment.

The ISPT-owned centre in Queen Street Mall - which will open Stage 2 in early April - has already attracted international and home-grown labels such as Coach, French Connection and Lisa Ho.

ISPT development director Chris McCluskey said with Sambag and other new signings, the centre was about 85 per cent pre-committed.

He said additional announcements would be made in coming weeks.

Mr McCluskey said the addition of the Sydney-based Sambag, whose signature ballet flats are a favourite with celebrities from Elle Macpherson and Hilary Swank to Dakota Fanning, was a coup.

"Cosmetics giant Mecca Maxima and iconic British menswear label Ben Sherman have also added their names to our list of high-calibre retailers," he said.

"Joining them is Tommy Hilfiger with the international fashion brand choosing to open its first Brisbane premium retail store at Wintergarden."

Much-loved favourites Blooms and Maggie T will return to Wintergarden.

Seed, French Connection, and Cue will all house flagship stores in the new Wintergarden.

Mr McCluskey said the new-look Wintergarden would draw more people to the CBD.

"It will revitalise the city's heart," he said.

Mr McCluskey said tenant fit-out was about to start.

Stage 2 will feature more than 50 stores and a 750-seat food court.
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Old February 3rd, 2012, 10:13 AM   #72
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Originally Posted by nathandavid88 View Post
Here's a Courier Mail article regarding the Wintergarden. Another newly announced brand – Sambag
It's called Scumbag by some fashion police in Sydney

Meh whatever it's welcome but they have a store in Perth so....yeah, Mecca sounds good seen the Melbourne Central one.
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Old February 6th, 2012, 12:08 AM   #73
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An interesting article by Mike O'Connor in today's Courier Mail...

Quote:
Brisbane's Queen Street Mall loses its focus as people-friendly precinct

by: Mike O'Connor From: The Courier-Mail February 06, 2012 12:00AM


AT WHAT point does a pedestrian mall cease to be a mall and become a drinking and dining precinct through which pedestrians are funnelled, forced to negotiate its canyons as best they can?

It is a question that needs an answer, for Brisbane's Queen Street Mall is no longer the people-friendly place envisioned by its creators.

The last car drove down Queen St in 1981 and the mall was opened the following year, in time for the Commonwealth Games, initially bound by Edward and Albert streets.

I waited patiently for trams in Queen St as a youth, standing in the optimistically named Safety Zones in the middle of the road.

The Mt Gravatt tram would then trundle across the Victoria Bridge and turn left, my nostrils wrinkling as it passed The Fish Board, before carrying me on to my stop at Holland Park.

Queen St had been a thoroughfare since the colony's earliest days and its closure to vehicular traffic and transformation into a mall - denounced by critics as trendy town-planning madness that would cause traffic chaos - has been a spectacular success.

Along the way, however, its character has changed and it is time that the city reviewed how it looks and how it works.

Restaurants have gradually encroached on the thoroughfare.

Competing for space and attention with the restaurants are two newsagencies, a juice bar, a large visitors' centre and a stage from which lingerie models were banned mid-parade last week when their French knickers were deemed inappropriate by Brisbane Marketing.

The eateries are as much - or more - about drinking as eating, with roughly half their floor space taken up with tall drinking stands and red vinyl bar stools.

At least one adds flat-screen television sets to the mix.

"Catch all your live sport here in HD - open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week," proclaim the signs.

You might well ask if the mood and atmosphere of our subtropical capital is effectively captured by a bunch of beer drinkers sitting around in shorts and singlets watching some games of English soccer on television.

There is a tired sameness about the food and beverage venues, with their plastic-sheafed tourist menus.

The image is completely at odds with the critically acclaimed restaurants in the Eagle St precinct, which represent, in part, the true dining heart of the city.

Put simply, some of the restaurants do not present well. They possess neither chic nor style.

They are public bars serving pub food in the middle of the city's premier shopping zone.

I'll be accused of being elitist for saying so, but so be it.

I've been accused of worse crimes.

Simply, it is possible to project a casual ambience and still be inclusive and I refuse to concede that mediocrity is a virtue.

These venues need to undergo a complete refurbishment for, as they stand, they do the city a disservice.

Apart from their lack of aesthetic appeal, there are too many of them.

The juice bar should be relocated away from the mall.

When I visited last week, the cardboard boxes of carrots and oranges stacked beside it did nothing for the visual appeal of the mall.

Aesthetics aside, they intrude too much into the mall and impede pedestrian traffic.

Walk up from Edward St and the sprawl of the eateries forces you into a narrow channel where you battle against the opposing tide of humanity to make headway.

The Brisbane City Council has allowed these establishments to take over the mall and must make a considerable amount of money from the rent it charges them.

The concept behind the mall, however, was for it to be an amenity for citizens and visitors, a free-flowing oasis in the city heart, not a revenue stream for the Brisbane City Council.

In April, the $100 million renovation of the Wintergarden Centre opens.

This is as good a catalyst as any for a hard look at the mall and how it presents to the 26 million people who visit the precinct each year.

The Wintergarden project's development director, Chris McCluskey, voices the concerns of a number of tenants whose businesses line the mall and the owners of international brands who have spent significantly on shop fit-outs in the new centre.

"The landlords and the investors are doing these things and the city needs to do a bit of it by looking at how the mall is formed now," McCluskey says.

"Universally, the comment I get is that there is not enough space for people to walk around.

"There's too much clutter. Some of it is necessary and you need food and beverage outlets and a visitor information centre but is it composed the right way?

"Is what we offer appropriate for 2012 and beyond? They are the questions that are being asked."

Walking up the mall towards the Victoria Bridge, you come across a bare expanse of sun-baked stone outside the casino, a lesser version of the man-made Death Valley that is the City Square.

Beyond that lies South Bank, shimmering across the river like a mirage. How to get there? Trudge across the bridge in 100 per cent humidity with not a suggestion of shade to be found.

The mall, surely, should flow into South Bank and be linked to it by, at the very least, a covered walkway.

The city is changing. The mall needs to change with it.
Source:http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/o...-1226263161127
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Old February 6th, 2012, 02:16 AM   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy View Post
Dirtbox and Bessie Head do a good trade as well.
Dirtbox and Bessie Head are moving to Wintergarden. ISPT(?) are no longer renewing / signing new leases. An obvious pointer towards major renovation works in the near future.
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Old February 6th, 2012, 02:31 AM   #75
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From the Bessie Head Website.

http://blog.bessiehead.com.au/

Quote:
It is with great excitement that we announce our impending Relocation!

From April 3rd, Bessie Head will be found on the ground level of the Wintergarden in a brand new concept store. Our menswear store Dirtbox will also be making the move, and will be positioned right next to us.

To celebrate this exciting news, we are having a MOVING SALE! Pop in store to see our generous discounts across a huge array of our beautiful stock.
I'm not at all surprised. These seemed to me the best of the stores in Broadway. Not sure what they're going to do about Scotch & Soda then...
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Old February 6th, 2012, 03:32 AM   #76
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Wow! This is very fast, especially considering that there have been no DAs lodged regarding a redevelopment of Broadway. Maybe Scotch & Soda will make the move to the Wintergarden as well? They'd fit the type of mix ISPT are trying to achieve there I would think. Bessie Head and Dirtbox should do a bit better in the Wintergarden than what they did in Broadway! I wonder what will happen with Harvey Norman when they get turfed out. They won't have as easy a time finding a suitable site that they would fit into. Although...maybe they could take over the old HMV Building while it happens? ISPT do own that property too, and it's a reasonable size. I imagine that ISPT would probably want to retain such a high profile tenant.

As for Mike O'Connor's article posted below, I agree with what he's saying in part...some parts of the mall do suffer from bottleneck issues, and that god awful juice bar should not be in the mall! That said, I don't think the bars/restaurants (though I use the term loosely) need to go outright. A couple of them – the one in front of the Regent in particular – I would like to see moved more towards the middle of the mall and out from the Regent, but the others aren't too much of an issue IMO. That said, they all need to be refurbished and differentiated. Next time you walk past, look at the furniture, checkerboard pattern floor (usually out from the bar) and the design of the menus and Specials board, and you'll see exactly how little differentiates them. Also, the management rights need to be given to different people to allow some real competition, because at the moment I think they are all run by a single proprietor.
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Old February 6th, 2012, 07:44 AM   #77
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Dinosaur Designs (one of the better confirmations so far) will be opening a store at Wintergarden, their first in Qld.

Check out their twitter feed.
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Old February 6th, 2012, 07:51 AM   #78
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I disagree completely with him. He wants the mall to return to the state it was in the 80's and said he would demolish the restaurants put MORE greenery.

The thing that makes the QSM arguably the best mall in the country if the fact that it is always a buzz with day/night activity thanks to the bars and restaurants themselves.

Also having a diverse mix of retail/bars is ultimately a good thing. Who wants everything to look sterile like Eagle Street?

Not a fan of that guy's opinion at all. I do however agree that the restaurants may need to be changed as they are so overpriced.
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Old February 6th, 2012, 08:22 AM   #79
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Agreed, QSM is the best mall in the country - it's an active hub day and night.

I don't agree with his opinion either.
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Old February 6th, 2012, 09:44 AM   #80
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I just wish they'd deregulate the trading hours in the city so that at night there would be a bit more buzz.
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