REAL ESTATE

Luxottica to roll out new concept store

BY CSA STAFF

Australia Eyewear retailer Luxottica Group S.p.A. announced Tuesday that it has successfully opened its new concept store in Australia and is preparing to roll it out globally.

The concept, which was unveiled in Australia’s fashion capital, Melbourne, was designed by architects E2. Labeled the OPSM eye hub store, the store allows customers to dictate and personalize their own shopping experiences.

Luxottica Group’s CEO Andrea Guerra said the company’s long-term goal is for this concept to be adapted globally. He said there are plans for more stores in Australia to debut in the next two to three years, and additional stores could be opened in key markets such as China, the United Kingdom and the United States.

“We are confident that our first OPSM eye hub will be a huge success and lead to future openings in worldwide markets,” said Guerra. “With the features the new store concept has to offer consumers, quite simply it sets new standards for international retailing. Naturally, we also believe this will be the next step in eyewear retailing in particular and look forward to bringing this concept to consumers around the world.”

The new concept, laid out in the shape of an eye, features a simulator room for testing glasses and sunglasses for glare and wind resistance, a product vault featuring exclusive designer glasses, touch-screen interactive mirrors that allow people to play back their new look, and a play place for kids.

Luxottica spent two years researching and designing OPSM eye hub.

The retailer operates 6,300 stores in North America, Asia-Pacific, China, South Africa and Europe. In addition to a global wholesale network covering 130 countries, Luxottica manages retail brands LensCrafters and Pearle Vision in North America, OPSM and Laubman & Pank in Australia, LensCrafters in Greater China and Sunglass Hut globally.

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REAL ESTATE

Regency names investment VP in Los Angeles

BY CSA STAFF

Regency Centers said Monday it has appointed John T. Mehigan as VP investments.

Located in the company’s Los Angeles office, Mehigan will be responsible for identifying, evaluating, and structuring profitable retail development opportunities throughout Southern California, said Regency.

Most recently, Mehigan served as senior development manager for Panattoni Development Co.

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REAL ESTATE

Lego opens in Manhattan

BY CSA STAFF

New York City Danish toymaker Lego has opened its first location in Manhattan. The two-level, 3,000-sq.-ft. store, in Rockefeller Center, is filled with intricate Lego displays (built by the company’s “Master Builders” who travel the world building specialized Lego projects) of familiar Manhattan landmarks.

The first floor features a wall with hundreds of bubbles filled with individual Lego pieces, including hard-to-find items. Customers are given a small cup and can mix and match the pieces.

The upper level has a play area, and a Master Builder Bar with computers and printers that allow customers to shop and ship, print out specialized building instructions, or design their own Lego kit and have it custom made. An area for Lego-themed birthday parties is also available.

The Manhattan store is based on Lego’s new prototype, which it debuted in Concord, N.C., in 2009. It’s part of an expansion strategy that will give the toy company an estimated 53 stores by yearend.

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