It’s a slow year for retail because of a weakening global economy, but at China’s new Shanghai Village mall, you can hardly tell: The open-air shopping concept soft-opened just two weeks ago and business is already booming.
“This is a soft opening, but it’s the most productive opening we’ve ever had,” Scott Malkin, chairman of the company that developed Shanghai Village, told trade publication WWD.
Run by Europe’s Chic Outlet Shopping Villages chain – which is also behind the popular Bicester Village mall in the UK and Italy’s Fidenza Village – the Art Deco-style Shanghai Village in Pudong covers a sprawling 592,000 square feet.
Among the 60-plus stores that are currently open are brand names such as Michael Kors, Giorgio Armani, Calvin Klein, Coach, Evisu and Kate Spade; the plan is eventually grow the list into a total of 240 stores. “Our philosophy is not to lease up the project all at once but to make sure we have the right mix,” Malkin said.
Stores aside, the mall also offers personal shopping services, exhibition spaces, lounges and more.
While the designer outlet is itself a draw, traffic will no doubt also be boosted by the mall’s neighbour: Theme park Shanghai Disney, which opened last week.
All that points to one thing - that for shoppers and Disney fans, the Chinese city must surely be the happiest place on earth right now.