The Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) has unveiled a storefront at the Manulife Centre at 55 Bloor Street West. The store is located at one of the most prominent retail corners in Canada in a space once occupied by luxury fashion retailer Creeds.
The LCBO store spans about 11,325 square feet on one level with street-facing both Bloor Street and Balmuto Street. Of that, about 8,800 square feet is publicly accessible retail space. Included in-store is an expansive assortment of 3,445 wines, beers, and spirits, ready-to-drink cocktails, and coolers from around the world. About 250 Ontario wines are displayed including 173 VQA wines. There’s an expansive Vintages section which includes premium offerings as well — some of the prices for bottles seen in the store were close to $10,000. The interior of the new LCBO store appears to be similar to other newer stores in the Toronto area.
A total of 144 linear feet of refrigerated shelving offers a wide selection of Ontario craft beers as well as other domestic and imported brands, ready-to-drink cocktails and coolers. There is also a chilled wine section that features 32 linear feet of refrigerated wine and an ice refrigerator for customers. The store’s product mix is said to be the result of market research, matching products and services to local tastes, demographics, and community interests, and includes an assortment of made in Ontario products.
“We are excited to open our doors in our newly relocated store, in the heart of some of the best shopping in Canada,” said George Soleas, President & CEO, LCBO. “The modern store offers an elevated shopping experience that our loyal customers from the community have come to expect from the LCBO.”
“We are excited to be partnering with LCBO to expand their presence in the Bloor-Yorkville community,” said Scott Gordon, head of real estate asset management, Canada at Manulife Investment Management. “We worked closely with LCBO to ensure their new location allowed them to showcase their premium offering, while also enhancing the local retail community.”
Beauleigh Retail Consultants negotiated the lease deal and conceptualized the retail mix at the overhauled Manulife Centre.
The former LCBO at Manulife Centre spanned about 7,500 square feet on the basement level of the retail podium. The space is now being offered for lease by CBRE with demising options for potentially several small tenants.
From the early 1990s until early 2017, tableware and gift retailer William Ashley occupied the prominent corner of Bloor and Balmuto streets at the Manulife Centre. William Ashley relocated in 2017 to the second level of The Colonnade at 131 Bloor Street West.
For several decades until its bankruptcy in 1990, luxury multi brand women’s retailer Creeds occupied the corner in a 38,500 square foot one level space that once spanned most of the expanse of the Manulife Centre facing Balmuto Street. Prior to its closure, Creeds operated shop-in-stores for luxury brands including Chanel, Ungaro, Jil Sander, Sonia Rykiel, Go Silk, and Krizia.
The Manulife Centre recently underwent an extensive redevelopment including a revitalization of its exterior with a glass facade and the addition of 35,000 square feet of retail space. The crowning new tenant Eataly opened in the fall of 2019 with most of its space occupying the second level. Other tenants include jewellery retailer Birks, footwear brand Ron White, fashion retailer Over the Rainbow, Bay Bloor Radio, Indigo, Shoppers Drug Mart, Loblaw City Market, and we recently reported that upscale fashion retailer Studio D had recently relocated to the Manulife Centre from midtown Toronto. Manulife Centre includes about 285,000 square feet of retail space, 435,000 square feet of office space and 809 rental apartments in a tower at 44 Charles Street West.