And the best department store in the world is…
New York — The United Kingdom’s Selfridges was named ‘Best Department Store in the World’ for the third consecutive time by the Intercontinental Group of Department Stores (IGDS). The award was given at the group’s Global Department Store Summit, which was held last week. The event is held every other year.
Selfridges was in competition for the award with Macy’s and the German retailer Breuninger.
“We are thrilled that Selfridges has again been recognized as the best department store in the world," said Anne Pitcher, managing director of Selfridges & Co. “We have had a terrific couple of years since last winning, and it is a tribute to the commitment of our teams that we have been honored with the award again this year. It gives us even greater impetus to continue to exceed our customers’ expectations and deliver to them a unique and extraordinary shopping experience.”
IGDS is the largest association of department stores worldwide and has 37 members from 35 countries on five continents.
Citi to let banking customers use reward points to pay bills
Citi is now offering its checking account customers the ability to use reward points to pay their bills. Citi ThankYou Rewards members can earn ThankYou points across their Citi banking and credit card relationship and use these points to pay virtually any bill online including phone, cable and electricity.
"We want our members to have the choice of using their points when and how they want," said Mary Hines Droesch, head of ThankYou Rewards at Citi. "Whether you want to pay this month’s cell phone or utility bill due next week, ThankYou Rewards lets you decide how you use your points."
Customers wishing to use their reward points toward bills will need to log on to citibank.com, go to Pay Bills, and select Make a One-Time Payment and a payee. From there, they should select the ThankYou Rewards Account and enter the dollar amount of the payment that they’d like to cover using ThankYou Points. To use both points and cash to pay a bill, customers need to enter the dollar amount they want to cover using points and the remaining cash amount from their checking accounts.
Costco, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Costco Wholesale Corp. has opened the doors to its second location in Louisiana, in the city of Baton Rouge. (The warehouse club giant made its Louisiana debut last fall, in New Orleans.) The store includes a bakery, fresh deli, food court, gas station, pharmacy and independent optometrist.
The Baton Rouge store, at 150,000 sq. ft., is slightly larger than the Issaquah, Wash.-based chain’s average sq. ft. of 143,000. It was built on the site of a former Coca-Cola bottling plant. The 345,000-sq-ft. building was razed and the 28-acre site completely leveled to accommodate the warehouse club.
Costco’s two stores in Louisiana stores were constructed by T.D. Farrell Construction, Alpharetta, Georgia. There is already talk of a new store opening in Lafayette, Louisiana, in the not-too-distant future.
Photos by Bob Boccaccio