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In addition, the mall underwent a 5,000 square foot expansion for the coveted brand from Spain.

Those efforts came to fruition Sept. 28, when Zara debuted a 26,000 square foot store on the first level between Nordstrom and Macy The space is evenly divided between a women and kids apparel wing and a men wing.

interesting and exciting byproduct of this was that we, in turn, got new store prototypes and designs, said PREIT chief executive officer Joseph Coradino. as landlords, often discount relocated tenants as new, but the customer actually sees a new store.

CLEM MURRAY

Hollister, in the Cherry Hill Mall, is one of five stores that were relocated to accommodate the arrival of Zara, the fast fashion brand out of Spain, by mall owner PREIT.

This version of mall musical chairs, retail experts say, is playing out nationally as malls fight to retain foot traffic.

is something that starting to happen more as mall landlords look to strategically place strong retail, restaurant, or entertainment focused tenants in their malls, said Garrick Brown, vice president of retail research for the Americas at Cushman Wakefield.

Phoenix based consultant Jeff Green, who advises national retailers, said mall developers are leaning toward adding tenants that are least affected by online shopping.

Zara, for instance, more to the millennial generation, Green said. is about making sure you are offering exactly what your market consumers are looking for.

CLEM MURRAY

On opening day at Cherry Hill Mall, Joanne Trab, of West Deptford, perused the racks inside the new Zara. The brand is known for updating fashion designs quickly.

PREIT has another tenant relocation in the works for 2018 at Cherry Hill when it adds Intimissimi, an Italian intimates store. PREIT said the move will allow it to relocate the cosmetics store Lush into a new prototype later this year.

Coradino said PREIT had been in discussions with Zara for several years about opening a store at Cherry Hill Mall. An opportunity came up in early 2016 after Uniqlo left the mall.

Uniqlo moved out, we had the flexibility in space to shift tenants around to accommodate this new and in demand retailer, he said. brand is very selective in their real estate so we always believed Cherry Hill Mall was a natural fit.

Saba Awan, 30, of Cherry Hill, a full time homemaker and mother of two young children, was at Zara grand opening, pushing her 8 month old son,
timberland work boots steel toe How PREIT landed Zara at Cherry Hill Mall
Hamza, in a stroller through the kids section.

one of my favorite stores, said Awan, who has gone to Zara in Baltimore, New York, and downtown Philadelphia. are only a select few in our area. It trendy and up to date and really reasonable in pricing, especially for kids.

CLEM MURRAY

Saba Awan, 30, of Cherry Hill, is excited to have a Zara so close to home. She had shopped at Zaras in Baltimore, New York and Center City Philadelphia.

Coradino said it was important to create a unique, customer retail experience and stay relevant.

the mall and retail landscapes continue to evolve, we view underperforming tenants as an opportunity, and really an advantage, to amass space that we otherwise may not have been able to, he said.

But Brown at Cushman Wakefield said changing things up comes with risks and should be executed carefully.

your existing and often longtime tenants to accommodate new concepts can potentially backfire if done improperly, he said. reality is, that if the leases of those tenants that you want to move still have years left on the term, they need to see some benefit from it.

Brown said this can include tenant improvements financed by the landlord for a fresher store look, a bigger space at the same rent, or moving the tenant next to another retailer catering to the same demographic so each can feed off the other traffic.

Another consideration, he said, was that with some of the larger institutional mall landlords such as PREIT, which owns and operates malls in nine states along the East Coast, including Plymouth Meeting, Exton Square, and the former Gallery at Market East that being redone into Fashion District Philadelphia a relocated tenant in one mall may seek similar deals at other PREIT properties.

deals can get complicated, Brown said.

So far, the Zara chess move has been positively received.

Last week Rick Sides, 42, a history teacher at Thomas E. Harrington Middle School in Mount Laurel, accidentally stumbled upon the just opened Zara. He shops at the Walnut Street Zara.

As hip, techno music blared from the speakers, Sides bought a bomber jacket that retailed for $89.90 and a shirt for $49.90.

clothes have an urban chic to them, said Sides, of Medford. have a lot of folks coming here by bus or car from Philly and Camden two urban centers which I think will be drawn to this type of fashion. This will bring a lot more people to this mall. sweet music to PREIT.
timberland work boots steel toe How PREIT landed Zara at Cherry Hill Mall