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Had loads of trouble with SCC, regularly unable to log in. Instead, I have been following and now re-registered! Yeah you're right, the stores on the uppermall are likely to have 2 floors, and those occupying lower and upper are likey to have 3 floors. This is inline with most modern developments...Leicester Highcross, Belfast Victoria Square, Birmingham Bullring etc. Bullring and Highcross have galleried malls, and this creates quite a nice effect when a store has a large lower mall level and then a further 2 stories opening onto the uppermall!
 

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johnny, I woulda been Paddyrat when it worked. Only posted once about McDonalds lol, and then I had too much trouble logging in. Hollister are REALLY bad at communicating new openings etc. Their parent company, Abercrombie & Fitch, seem to keep all Hollister's movements quite low-key considering how big a deal they are. Up until recently there were open stores in the UK that weren't listed on their website. Yep Chris you're right about Apple, they announce new openings days before...however they've had Eldon Square in their recruitment site for months now.
 

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The old Boots in Eldon Square is tiny compared to the average Peacocks store. I really can't think of many multiples that would have a store that size and awkward layout...other than catering. Peacocks are normally somewhere in a range between the size of Next and Primark on Northumberland Street
 

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The old Boots in Eldon Square is tiny compared to the average Peacocks store. I really can't think of many multiples that would have a store that size and awkward layout...other than catering. Peacocks are normally somewhere in a range between the size of Next and Primark on Northumberland Street

*sorry i mean Monument Mall, not ES*
 

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Chris you've basically described Selfridges lol. Even Fenwicks has become a bit like that with the sheer amount of concessions compared to John Lewis, who do loads of their own lines. Selfridges is basically one big warehouse teaming with concessions, they just happen to give you your goods in the same yellow bag! Not even one of the food outlets in a Selfridges is their own, all Pret/Krispy Kreme/Yo! Sushi etc etc. So sadly, I think bar the exception of John Lewis etc and those that uphold the traditions of an old fashioned department store with their own brands and you go there 'because Bainbridges are bound to have it', I think the 'high-end' department stores are big versions of what you have described in Mexico!

I think the desire for these stores has become less for what they sell, and more for the qudos associated. 'What is a city without a Selfridges' kinda attitude. This all may not make sense...I'm at work and bashing this out before I get back to task!
 

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Yeah Burton was always certainly the smart office-wear end of Arcadia's mens offering...whereas I think TopMan caters for those that wish they were in boybands. Not much for the over-15's these days.

With regards to the 'stripped-back' finishes in the Grainger St store, you're right geordiejohn this is a trait of most UO stores. As is the 3level thing. The only big multiples off the top of my head I can think of that really push the bare brick/concrete exposed fixtures thing is Republic (moving within ES), Cult (wont come as we're getting SuperDry), G-Star (already there) and All Saints (moving to ES). So it certainly does bode well!
 

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I think UO would be just as iffy about opening next to TJHughes. They're quite a status symbol chain for the young trendy lot, and they often define a 'trendy' shopping quarter in the cities they're in.

Whilst it's still seen as high end next to the Arcadia staples, Zara has become pretty standard on even the smallest of city centre highstreets, and whilst its bizarre when a place doesn't have one, its certainly not too much of a classy treat anymore, as it once was. Zara's sister brands Mango and Bershka are more high-end 'niche', both represented in MC.

Luckily there won't be a city centre site for years that's big enough for a Matalan so we'll never have that problem!

Next on my dream list would be at least American Apparel and ideally a UniQlo. UniQlo haven't really branched outside London (where theyre everywhere!) but AA is in prime sites in places like Nottingham and a really good addition, especially in a big student city.
I was actually really impressed with the retail in Nottingham, its little cobbled trendy quarters with trams etc, lined with American Apparel, Boss, Ted Baker, Paul Smith's various 'flagship hometown' stores really make a great addition next to the standard highstreets on the other side of the city centre. Just an aside there...but interesting that a city of such a similar size/status to us has such a wide provision :)
 

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Yeah exactly you're right. Nottingham isn't much of a contributor as a city, in my eyes anyway. It doesn't do enough to establish itself culturally etc in the region. It too is a regional capital, and has to compete with Leicester, Derby etc, and a bit further to Coventry, Milton Keynes, Sheffield and Birmingham. We, however, are miles away from any close competition...Leeds and Edinburgh...so between Newcastle and the MetroCentre, we should have at least what Notts has! I guess the argument is that whilst the cities in the East Mids are poor, the regions and counties are VERY rich.

As I've said before, I'm living in Leicester at the minute for work and within the last 18months, with the redevelopment of its main shopping centre, the retail provision has gone from something like Sunderland, to a major retail destination. Along with John Lewis came Zara, All Saints, Apple, L'Occitaine, Boss, Lacoste, Ghost, Reiss, Carluccio's, Cruise, etc etc. Yes some of those are in Newcastle/MC but surely we should have those if Leicester of all places does!!
It's been mentioned before on here, but do check out Leicester Highcross online. Stunning example of how a city centre mall should be redeveloped, and it winds me up when I walk round it and then think of what's going on at home in comparison :(

sorry for the essay!
 

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NCC planning apps site has an application for what was ShoeExpress at the Eldon Leisure escalators to turn those awful windows they have on Blackett St into floor-ceiling glazing as the unit has been changed to a 'restuarant' license. Should make an impovement from both inside and out, meaning whoever operates there can offer nice views of the new Old Eldon Square. interesting to see that end of ES become a bit of a foodcourt, but worrying we could have Bimbis mk2.
 

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Hollister is in Meadowhall, Belfast etc etc, this won't be the only one outside London. Still an amazing coup though! Just frustrating, unresearched journalism lol. Nice to be told 'officially' the question we've all been asking about whether or not the old malls will be brought up to scratch!
 

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Apple Stores do it for people on a few levels. Not only do they appeal to the apple geeks (i recently converted and will never go back!), but they also appeal to those with an eye for beautiful design. sounds cheesey, but their stores are just gorgeous and believe it or not, people visit them because they're 'cool' and nice places to browse. They also run classes and workshops for how to use your Mac once you've gotten it home and setup, and their in-store repair/aftersales service is phenomenal. Whilst in-store sales may not be too high, they act as the perfect place to demo all their gadgets so that people go away and buy them online...go and make their boss convert their business computers...even just be talking about Apple and their products etc etc. Treat them as massive, interactive marketing tools - keeping the brand and elite-obsession that Apple has recently developed - at the forefront of people's minds. And afterall, these days, on a global and mass-marketing level...what is technology or design if it's not Apple?! lol.
very very clever!
 

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Nice little email off Apple this morning, as a customer. I'm guessing this explains the Twitter thing, as this signals Apple's offical announcement. The copy includes:

'Our Place is Your Place. The Apple Store, Eldon Square, Opens its doors at 10.30am on 16 Feb.
Come to the new Apple Store, Eldon Square and bring your curiosity. It's the best place to learn all about the Mac, check out an iPod and see all the amazing things an iPhone can do. And if you find something you like, take it home that day. When you get to the store, find a Specialist in a blue shirt. The Specialists are your guides to everything from checking in for an appointment to instant check-out. If you're one of the first 1,500 visitors, you'll get a free Apple T-shirt.* Additionally, 250 current Mac owners can buy a One to One membership for personal training, normally available only with the purchase of a new Mac.** '

Someone get me a Tshirt, I'm in Leicester!!
 

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Also, Apple already list this store's opening times. Mon-Weds is the usual (ridiculous) 6pm close. Thurs is still 8pm. But Fri and Sat are listed as 7pm, which suggests Eldon Square may be starting to drag themselves out of the dark ages and (very slowly) introduce slightly later opening times. I still find it bizarre that the main shopping centre in a city like Newcastle (size, regional capital vibrant evening economy - the gap between shopping and leisure should be bridged, imo) shuts at 6pm! Its insane to me. Ah well, nice to see them testing the water with fri and sat!
 

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All looks really good! Our own little Bullring lol. Looking forward to having a good look round next time I'm up. Judging by the photos, the Apple store looks to be at least double width format to a few of their other new mall openings in the UK, including Leicester, Belfast and possibly Birmingham. I don't think we need to be too hostile about people 'not even from the north east' visiting Eldon Square for the new Apple Store....how nice that we have yet another thing to draw in visitors to enjoy what we've got and invest in our economy!! Would be very small-town indeed to get annoyed at 'outsiders'...
Looking forward to a good snoop round next time I'm up home.
 

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yeah SuperGroup also own the brand CULT, which trades basically as a Superdry store with bits of Republic's stock thrown in for luck...Bench, SoulCal etc. I think it def looks better to have 'Superdry store', as its the instantly recogniseable brand.


FYI as an aside... not all McDonald's in the North East are franchised - many are owned by the company. Particularly Northumberland St, Silverlink etc. Even if originally a franchise, the company will often 'buy back' a store if it is exceptionally profitable, so that they don't have to share the profit with a local businessman! The 2 stores I just mentioned are up there with the UK's most profitable branches.
 

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nah much smaller...right near the doorway i think they split some units up years ago. little 'pink' bag shop etc. Schuh would be huge for a 20-seat milkshake parlour!
 
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