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Harbour Town’s first step in shopping centre transformation

A multi-million dollar transparent roof canopy providing shelter from the elements is the first in a series of upgrades set to begin at Harbour Town Melbourne, and will establish the centre as one of Melbourne’s leading shopping and entertainment precincts.

In addition to the expansive roof canopy that will cover Star Crescent and Wharf Street, redevelopment  of mall facades and shopping amenities will provide a significant boost to the overall shopping and leisure experience of the Centre.Red Design Group and The Buchan Group were commissioned to provide the vision for the stunning overhaul.  The unique canopy will provide shelter and an interesting design feature.

The redevelopment is the first undertaking in a schedule of significant capital investment by AsheMorgan in the centre in the years ahead.

Scentre Group development activity

In 2015, Scentre Group commenced $825 million (SCG share: $578m) of developments, including projects at Casey, Chatswood, Hurstville, Kotara, North Lakes and Warringah Mall Predevelopment work continues across the portfolio, and the Group maintains a forward development pipeline in excess of $3 billion.

The recently announced $310-million development at Westfield Warringah Mall  will create an exciting shopping experience  for Sydney’s Northern Beaches customer.  The project will reconfigure the fashion offer through the creation of a two-level parallel mall, introducing 70 new retailers that will be anchored by large format stores to connect a new reconfigured Myer department store and the existing Woolworths and Big W.

Current developments at Casey, Chatswood, Hurstville, Kotara and North Lakes continue to progress well, as does work on the $670-million third-party development at Pacific Fair for AMP.

Scentre Group also continues to enhance the retail mix and invest to improve the customer and retailer experience throughout the portfolio.

Works commenced to improve the ambience at 12 centres, including Westfield Parramatta where new flooring, lighting and column treatments will be installed, together with upgraded furniture and landscaping.

The recently launched nationwide network  of 1,200 custom-designed digital SmartScreens, together with the existing large-format digital ‘spectacular’ screens, is another example of Scentre Group making its centres more dynamic and productive. This new in-house digital advertising network provides retail and brand partners with a sophisticated channel to promote products and offers and better connect with the shopper.

The increasing importance of easy access to fast, free Wi-Fi for shoppers is a priority, with the rollout of a state-of-the-art Wi-Fi network across the portfolio well underway.

New technology is also being used in other ways to enhance the customer experience, such as the introduction of a ticketless parking system to four centres during 2015.

SEPHORA to open its first Melbourne  store at Melbourne Central

The GPT Group announced global cosmetics giant SEPHORA will open its first Melbourne store at Melbourne Central before the end of the year.

The 550m2 store, located on Level 1 of Melbourne Central will be SEPHORA’s second Australian store, with the first store having opened in Sydney in 2014.

The new Melbourne Central store will be uniquely positioned alongside the historical Coops Shot Tower, one of three 19th-century shot towers remaining in Australia. The tower, which stands at 50 metres tall, is an iconic architectural destination, located in the heart  of the La Trobe St building.

The decision by SEPHORA, owned by Louis Vuitton and Moet Hennessy, to make Melbourne Central its home, will add to its list of 2,000 stores worldwide.

GPT Head of Investment Management for Retail, Brett Williams, said it was a coup for Melbourne Central to become home to Melbourne’s first SEPHORA.

“We’re seeing a significant revitalisation in the retail landscape of the Melbourne CBD, and Melbourne Central is right at the heart of that change,” Williams said.


Country Manager, SEPHORA Australia, Libby Amelia, said the introduction of the beauty giant into Melbourne Central would offer Victorian beauty enthusiasts long-awaited access to the exciting world of SEPHORA.

“We explored several different location options for the Melbourne store, but Melbourne Central was the front runner. The CBD location, the high calibre of retailers and the size of the space available were all attractive factors which led us  to choose this exciting shopping destination,” said Ms Amelia.

SEPHORA Australia will continue to expand its presence across the country, and hopes to provide other Australian states the same unique shopping experience that will be on offer in three locations by the end of the year.

The $50-million transformation of  Toowong Village is now complete

Retail architects The Buchan Group led the design, while major Australian firm, Built Queensland, completed the construction, which began in February 2014.

All three shopping levels of the 46,000m2 property have been completely refurbished.  The redesigned centre includes revamped interiors, a simplified mall layout, new amenities and directional parking system. It also features a refurbished food court, as well as a new alfresco dining precinct called High St Eat, situated along the front of the shopping village where High St meets Sherwood Road.

Mr Steven Bridges, Managing Director of Retail First, says, “The redevelopment has been  a testament to retail innovation and design, showcasing a sophisticated shopping environment whilst still maintaining the distinctive Village feel. We are very happy with the new centre and its reinvigorated retail offer… the transformation meets the market demand, and shoppers  are reconnecting with Toowong Village.”

The new High St Eat is  home to a number of popular restaurants including GYG, Grill’d, Tibetan Kitchen, San Churro, Stellarossa, Gerbino’s, Crazy Cook and Sizzler.

The Village’s three major retailers, David Jones, Coles and Kmart, have been fully refurbished with the latest store layouts.

Sydney Airport has commenced stage one of the improvements
on the T2 Departures casual dining precinct

The T2 casual dining precinct is undergoing an exciting refresh of the food and beverage offering to enhance value and choice for passengers, delivering an overall superior customer experience in the T2 Domestic terminal. New food brands announced for the revitalised space include Chur Burger in an airport first. The high-profile burger restaurant is the brainchild of famed chef Warren Turnbull, who also developed  past gourmet ventures and award-winning restaurants Assiette and District Dining.

The burger offering will be joined by an extensive selection of brand new food and beverage options, including Mad Mex, SumoSalad Green Label, Roll’d, Hokka Hokka, Red Rooster and Sahara Grill. Stage One, which is due for completion at the end of 2015, forms part of the wider improvements plan for Sydney Airport in 2015 and 2016, designed to deliver a  world-class airport experience.

$600-million Karrinyup Shopping Centre development approved

The development application for the $600-million redevelopment of Karrinyup Shopping Centre has  been approved by the Western Australian Planning Commission’s Joint Development Assessment Panel.

The approval means the centre can moved forward in planning for its expansion, which is expected to include additional supermarkets, existing Woolworths and fresh food precinct; large format international retailers; high-quality fashion brands; comprehensive food and beverage offering including indoor and  al fresco dining; large piazza, corso and main street; leisure, lifestyle and entertainment, and residential apartments.

On completion, the centre will be approximately 113,300m2 which includes retail, food and beverage and non-retail commercial space.

The redevelopment, which is due to commence  in late 2016, is expected to boost the Western Australian economy and retail sector with the creation of approximately 2,500 jobs during construction and 2,500 new retail, support and management jobs on completion.

UNIQLO announces third Victorian store  at Eastland,
as part of its active growth  strategy in Australia

UNIQLO Australia announced plans for its third store in Victoria set to open at Eastland this Spring, as part of the global retailer’s commitment to expanding its Australian operation. The new store  in Melbourne’s east will open its doors in late 2015, with the view of making international fashion more accessible to Melburnians, no matter where they reside.

UNIQLO Eastland will be a premium large-scale outlet with a sales floor spanning nearly 1,045m2, joining over 350 brands on completion of the centre’s $665 million redevelopment to transform into one of Melbourne’s most desirable urban shopping destinations.

The store will look to create more than 70 jobs for the Ringwood precinct, with positions on offer for both managers and store staff in the surrounding areas.

Once completed, Eastland’s $665-million transformation will offer more than 350 speciality stores, with a carefully curated selection of international and Australian high-street and boutique brands.

New bus interchange marks first step in Chadstone’s redevelopment

Chadstone Shopping Centre cut the ribbon on its new bus interchange and taxi rank on 29 July, the first of many projects to be completed in the next evolution of Australia’s premier retail destination.

At least one million passengers will use the bus interchange every year once it opens to the public  on Wednesday 5 August. The interchange will provide shoppers with a central point to access Chadstone Shopping Centre from an extensive network of 14 bus lines connecting to the suburban train network and Melbourne’s east and south.

The interchange is the first stage to be completed as part of the major development, providing Chadstone Shopping Centre’s 22 million annual customers with an even more exceptional shopping experience.

A new Target store will open in September, followed by the completion of two new car parking areas in November – creating the largest number of car parking spaces ever, just in time for Christmas.

In mid-2016 a new 10-level office tower will open followed by the new retail precinct in late 2016, which will include a new Hoyts digital cinema complex, two new dining precincts, and more than 100 retailers including at least three new international flagship stores.

The project will add a further 1900 ongoing jobs to the 7000 jobs at the centre, and will ensure Chadstone Shopping Centre builds on its renowned reputation as Australia’s Fashion Capital.

Federation Centres announces four property sales

Federation Centres (ASX:FDC), announced that it  has entered into agreements to sell four properties for a total consideration of $153.1 million, representing an overall premium to book value of 2.4%.

Details of the sales are:

  • The sub-regional centre Goulburn Plaza in New South Wales and convenience centre Katherine Oasis in the Northern Territory have been unconditionally sold to Charter Hall for a total of $94.9 million, representing a 12.3% premium to the combined  book value. Settlement is expected later this month.
  • The sub-regional centre Westside Plaza in Broken Hill in New South Wales has been sold for $33.7 million, representing a 6.4% discount to book value. The unconditional sale to Sentinel Property Group is expected to settle later this month.
  • The sub-regional centre Mount Gambier Central in South Australia has been sold to a private investor for $24.5 million, representing a 15.5% discount to book value. The sale is expected to settle in November 2015, subject to execution of certain lease contracts.
  • Federation Centres Chief Executive Officer, Angus McNaughton said: “Together with the recent sale  of Lutwyche City, we have announced around $220 million in asset sales this month. These sales demonstrate the progress our team is making with the ongoing portfolio enhancement program through  a combination of refurbishment, redevelopment and selective capital transactions”.

Eastland Chefs-7Melbourne’s epicurean spirit comes  to life in Eastland’s Town Square

Celebrity chefs George Calombaris and Frank Camorra, alongside iconic Melbourne eateries including Daniel Wilson’s Huxtaburger, were revealed as partners for the new Eastland.

Setting a benchmark for dining in Eastern Melbourne, Calombaris will introduce a new dining concept from his line of popular modern Athenian souvlaki bars, called Jimmy Grants Deluxe.

Vibrant Mexican taqueria, Pacos Tacos, the brainchild of Movida’s Frank Camorra and Andy McMahon, will further invigorate Eastern Melbourne’s culinary landscape.

Joining Calombaris and Camorra at the new Eastland is Dante Ruaini, Jeff Wong and Daniel Wilson, the team behind the gourmet burger venue Huxtaburger, renowned for their sweet brioche buns and grass-fed Wagyu patties.

A new venture from Seagrass Boutique Hospitality Group called Hunter & Barrel, a new gastro-inspired casual dining concept, will introduce a vibrant bar and restaurant that celebrates quality meat, craft beer and barrel-aged cocktails. Local identities Dale White and Rebecca Gallagher of Bekendales and The Public Brewery will bring a celebration of the Yarra Valley region with a concept called The Cellar Door that will house a rooftop vegetable garden and bar.

Eastland’s already strong line-up of food partners also includes the new-to-market concept AngAng by Chinta Ria Soul, Casa Mia by Mario De Nardo, and the popular inner city fish and burger bar, Hunky Dory.
Once completed, Eastland’s $665-million transformation will offer more than 350 speciality stores including H&M, David Jones and Target.

The new Eastland is designed to create engaging experiences for a vibrant and evolving urban community, bringing together the finest in contemporary gastronomy, fashion, style and design.
The first stage of the development will launch in late 2015, with stage two due for completion in mid 2016.

Broadway Shopping Centre receives Development Approval

Broadway has received development approval from the City of Sydney for  a $55-million redevelopment which  will deliver an expanded and enhanced fashion and dining precinct in a contemporary and urban setting.
The redevelopment is expected to  be completed in Spring 2016. The Centre’s owners, Mirvac Group and Perron Group, have confirmed it will be business as usual throughout the redevelopment period.

The redevelopment includes a 3,400m2 expansion of Level 2 which will deliver approximately 31 in-demand retailers and a new mini-major. The redevelopment will increase the centre’s food and fashion retail offer in response to ever-growing customer demand for aspirational fashion and new casual food and dining formats. Mirvac’s Senior Development Manager – Retail, Christina Nelson, said the redevelopment is part of Mirvac’s ongoing commitment to develop Broadway into a premier urban shopping destination.

“We have listened carefully to our customers and Broadway’s new food and fashion offer is in response to their needs and wants,” Mrs Nelson said.

“Following the very successful introduction of Apple Store in mid-2012 and ALDI last year, we are now finalising plans to introduce more exciting retailers to the Centre and to deliver a comprehensive dining offer and premier customer amenities.” SCN

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Shopping Centre News

Shopping Centre News (SCN) is in the ‘information business’, and is perceived as such by its readers. Daily industry news makes a must-visit as part of the morning routine for those who want to keep right across the latest retail developments and events, while SCN's premium magazine is the leading publication for the shopping centre industry in Australia and New Zealand.

Known as the ‘industry bible’ SCN is printed five times a year with fascinating, in-depth features and important critical analysis written by known industry insiders as well as the popular ‘Guns’ reports, which ranks Australian shopping centre performances. Shopping Centre News is the only publication in the world that features centre statistics on Turnover, Turnover per square metre and Specialty Shop turnover per square metre for every major centre in Australia.

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