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BY CSA STAFF

Chain Store Age celebrates the winners of its 26th annual design competition, which attracted entries from around the globe. G by Guess, a new concept from Guess? Inc., was honored as the best overall entry, Store of the Year. In addition, there were 29 first-place awards and nine honorable-mention awards in the various categories.

The judges for this year’s competition were Peter Kelly, VP, store planning and facilities management, Brown Shoe, Madison, Wis.;

Steve Kitezh, director, colors and materials, FITCH, New York City; George Holz, director of construction, Foot Locker, New York City; and Sue Nicgorski, director, T.L. Martin & Associates, Wayne, Pa. ( Judges whose firms submitted entries in the competition did not vote in the respective category.)

All of the winning projects are profiled in this special section. All received first-place awards, except where noted. Additional photos can be viewed on www.chainstoreage.com.

Table of Contents

Gby Guess ,overall winner of the Retail Store of the Year competition, has a California vibe and a cool atmosphere.
REI’s eco-prototype advances green building and design.
New Balance mixes style with flexibility.
Minimalist setting puts spotlight on merchandise at A/X Armani Exchange.
Design for Under Armour embodies the excitement and emotion of sports.
Visual imagery, architecture and displays make for unforgettable experience at Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center.
Bloomingdale’s extends its signature style in new directions.
Neiman Marcus is a study in modern glamour.
Artist-inspired interior creates a sense of discovery at ILORI.
Engaging design makes shopping easier at Select Comfort.
3rd Nature is targeted to performance cyclists.
Streamlined design enhances the shopping experience at Best Buy.
Saturn presents its cars in a sleek, contemporary showroom.
America’s Mattress showroom delivers a strong brand message in an inviting environment.
Mr. Clean Performance Car Wash is big on family appeal.
Innovative exhibit space reflects Timberland’s environmental positioning.
Elephant Pharm combines traditional drug store offerings with herbal remedies in a lively space.
Flooring America engages customers with easy-to-shop, home-like setting.
Neiman Marcus makes a dramatic first impression with undulating, stainless-steel exterior.
The Home Depot transforms facade into a powerful brand statement.
Dynamic visuals enhance immersive, playful environment at Ridemakerz.
M&M’s World New York boasts three levels of interactive attractions, gifts, souvenirs—and fun.
Las Olas Plaza’s light, breezy feel complements its beach locale.
Design of Chicago Botanic Garden Shop is in sync with its garden-like setting.
City Market entices the senses and evokes the feel of a European gourmet market.
Contemporary, Mexican-style artistry highlights Larroc.
Sophisticated accents add to the dining ambience at mesh.
Floating, curved-wood panels set off Vivi Ristorante.
40 Carrots has a bright, modern feel.
Fresh offerings take center stage at WOW!
SAQ Selection displays wine and spirits in a warm, customer-friendly space.
Samsung Electronics Brand Shop is in tune with brand.
Sunglass Hut calls attention to eyewear’s fashion-accessory status.
Casa Palacio displays luxury home furnishings in an upscale environment.
Seibu blends elegant design with Japanese aesthetic

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Stage Stores says Peebles evp to retire

BY CSA STAFF

HOUSTON Stage Stores today announced that Dennis Abramczyk, evp and coo of its Peebles Division, will be retiring after approximately nine years with the company. He will continue to serve in his position until a replacement is found.

Jim Scarborough, chairman and ceo, commented, We want to thank Dennis for his contributions and service to our company, and we wish him well as he begins this new phase of his life. We will immediately begin a search for his successor, and we are pleased that Dennis will be staying on until the conclusion of our search process, as this will ensure a smooth and orderly transition.

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Home Depot to cut 500 HQ jobs

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ATLANTA Home Depot is cutting 500 jobs at its headquarters. According to reports the cuts make up 10% of the 5,000 employees who work at the headquarters.

The cuts are partly due to the struggling U.S. economy, which has hurt market conditions, reports said. Employees were notified of the eliminations today, they will be paid through April 4.

Home Depot reported fiscal 2007 third quarter consolidated net earnings of $1.1 billion, or 60 cents per diluted share, compared with $1.5 billion, or 73 cents per diluted share, in the same period in fiscal 2006.

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