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Well, that is a complex question, and because it applies to the subject of the thread about local installations, I hope this is
not off-topic. However, I think perhaps it is not a simple thing. Now, I am not in the business so I may be
incorrect on some of my impressions, so please correct me if I am wrong. but I don't think the City of Toronto really is
in charge of the final aesthetics of a new storefront. I imagine that it is a combination of the design teams
of the fashion houses, and signage, etc.. constraints placed upon them by the owner of the existing building. Sound right? :dunno:

I believe that often building owners impose strict limitations on some elements of store-frontage as they lay out guidelines
for prospective tenants. Here is what it looks like on Alberni Street neighbourhood in Vancouver:



https://www.retail-insider.com/retail-insider/2017/12/alberni-street-vancouver




https://www.retail-insider.com/retail-insider/2017/12/alberni-street-vancouver



It is all very organised, neat and uniform... if that is your thing.


We know that Birks is fully capable of making a wonderful storefront; the one in Yorkdale is
stunning:










So why did Birks suddenly come out with what happened on Bloor Street? An excellent question..

And one to which I have no answers so I won't even speculate. Maybe they have some plans to
enhance the look? Who knows? :dunno:


Leading international fashion houses like Dior, Chanel, Prada, St Laurent, etc... generally adhere
to very strict aesthetics when they do a corporate installation anywhere in the world even though
of course they will vary the size and style depending on the prestige of the various markets. Naturally
they would use in-house designers. For example the new Dior that is opening this summer on Bloor Street:





will follow Dior's current "look" for new stores, within the constraints of what will be allowed by the 1960's Colonnade
building. Ditto for all of them; they follow an in-house design vision that might change from year to year, or decade to decade.
So for example, a Cartier installation from 10 years ago might, or might not not look the same as if it were a newly opened
Cartier today.

I imagine that in general this is the case for many Bloor Street and Yorkville storefronts. Naturally, we don't have any of
the uber-prestigious and glamorous five storey showpiece flagship fashion houses that you might see in Hong Kong, or other
leading international cities because of our more modest market size. The local market here in some cases can be either small, medium or
surprisingly large; for example the new Hermes and the soon to be opened Dior are both of very impressive sizes compared
to the rest of North America. I've heard several times that Chanel does very well here, but no, we are not in the same league
as the leading cities that were posted on the last page. And, realistically, there are no ultra deluxe historic buildings or deluxe original
couturier locations here like you may find on Old Bond Street in London, or Fifth Avenue in New York City... so there is no point
our ever hoping for that type of building to be built either here, or anywhere else in the world. Either you've got it,
or you don't. But "modern" installations of most of the fashion houses can, in my opinion, sometimes
have a lot of similarities around the world. Here are some of the Bloor Street/Yorkville installations:





























































































and admittedly, Bloor has a few store or retail fronts that I simply don't personally like; such as these:








And (sadly) the new Birks, and the Winners:







and this new "cannabis" shop. What can I say? :



 

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Okay.... now we reach the point of comparing the Bloor Street store fronts to the installations in one of the major
world cities, like for example London. Now, I hesitate to even mention the word "London" in the Toronto forums,
because often it will lead to a squad of people insisting that nothing in Toronto could ever possibly be on
the same level as something in London, yadda yadda. We know this has happened a lot in the past so hopefullly
to head off the usual indignant wrangling, for the record now I will state the obvious; the fashion market in
Toronto is not and likely never will be the equivalent of London, Paris or New York. Toronto is NOT London, Paris
New York, Tokyo, or Hong Kong. And some other places too.
.
I hope that will save us all rediscovering that startling conclusion. Toronto is, as they say, what it is. I just happen to
have more of my photos from London that I have taken myself.


So, with great trepidation I will gingerly say that from my experience, London has two major fashion streets
(maybe more I am unaware of), but I'm familiar with Old Bond Street, and Sloane Street. Old Bond is one of the
ultra deluxe high end fashion streets like you will see in Paris or New York. Like I said before, we will never see this happen
here so there is no point comparing apples to oranges. We are not magically going to have a Chrysler Building or a
Buckingham Palace built here either, so we have to live to a certain extent in reality.

So let's have a look at the other one, Sloane Street in Knightsbridge, which has more "modern" installations. And
in many ways, Sloane Street and Bloor Street are surprisingly similar, except that I prefer the actual sidewalk
and installations here on Bloor Street. These are photos of Sloane Street in London that I took back in 2012,
so no doubt there have been some changes since:




https://www.streetsensation.co.uk/bus19/sloane_street.htm


I do prefer the new granite sidewalks and landscaping on Bloor:







But here was Sloane Street in 2012. Not great photos, so I apologize. We were
walking at a good clip late at night and my camera was not great at low light shots.













































But Sloane Street has an awesome little pub that I am very jealous of:



 

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Discussion Starter #223
I don't know where the fault lies (the developer?) but someone dropped the ball. On other blocks where there's already a building its been retailers re-designing their store front. In this case, everything was being built from scratch. You either work with the lead tenant, in this case Eataly, to design the whole podium or then you customize each store front for each retailer.

If this isn't how it works maybe someone can chime in. What I think we can all agree on is that what's been built isn't anywhere close to good enough.
 

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Discussion Starter #225
Yes it's 2 steps forward, 1 step back. It would be nice if things were built right the first time around but things are constantly improving.
 

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About 50 Scollard and 210 Bloor W, they each have less than 100 units, and considering the number of floors they have (42 and 29 respectively), they could potentially have just one unit per floor, like those "Billionaires Row" towers in NYC. I never thought for one second that such towers would actually get approved. Are we going to see an influx of one-unit-per-floor towers in Toronto (or anywhere in Canada) anytime soon?
 

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I think its not economically feasible. 210 Bloor is not approved yet and 50 Scollard is having hard time selling units. they even lowered the height of the tower.
 

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About 50 Scollard and 210 Bloor W, they each have less than 100 units, and considering the number of floors they have (42 and 29 respectively), they could potentially have just one unit per floor, like those "Billionaires Row" towers in NYC. I never thought for one second that such towers would actually get approved. Are we going to see an influx of one-unit-per-floor towers in Toronto (or anywhere in Canada) anytime soon?
They exist here already; for example Museum Place across from the Royal Ontario Museum:


https://urbanrealtytoronto.com/museum-house-toronto-206-bloor-st-west/



or the tower behind/above Gucci. This one is particularly interesting as it is a restoration of an older 1960's tower. The penthouse on the 13th floor was originally designed by Philip Johnson:





Here is an article about it from the New York Times written back in 2012:
https://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/21/greathomesanddestinations/21iht-retoronto21.html

Great Homes & Destinations
In Toronto, a Spacious Glass House in the Sky

By KATHERINE TARBOXSEPT. 20, 2012


TORONTO — When an 840-square-meter penthouse in the new Toronto Four Seasons hotel complex sold last year for 28 million Canadian dollars, it made headlines as the most expensive condominium sale in Canada’s history.

And while the Toronto real estate market is thriving, thanks to its history of stable prices and a vacancy rate of less than 1 percent, it is not known for luxury penthouses with prices exceeding 30,000 dollars per square meter, or about $2,900 per square foot.

Now, however, Toronto’s first condo of this type — a 1960s unit designed by Philip Johnson — is on the market with an asking price of 28 million dollars.

This 953-square-meter apartment was the brainchild of the Toronto businessman Noah Torno and his wife, Rose, who came up with the idea of putting a penthouse unit on top of an office building after they visited friends who lived above Bergdorf Goodman in New York.

The Tornos hired Mr. Johnson, the celebrated American architect, to create a condo that looked like a larger version of the Glass House that he designed in 1949 as a weekend retreat in New Canaan, Connecticut. But this version is 13 floors above Bloor Street, considered to be the Canadian version of Fifth Avenue in New York.....



read it all here:
https://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/21/greathomesanddestinations/21iht-retoronto21.html
 

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Discussion Starter #232
It almost looks urban. :yes:
 
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