Saks Fifth Avenue Gains Potential Calgary Opportunity

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Landlord Cadillac Fairview has bought Target’s leases at Calgary’s Chinook Centre and Market Mall. The move could facilitate Saks Fifth Avenue’s entry into the Calgary market, according to multiple sources.

Chinook Centre’s former Target store measures 115,500 Square feet, and is located in the centre of the mall. In September of 2014, Nordstrom’s first Canadian store opened in the centre, and its Hudson’s Bay store recently completed a substantial renovation. Chinook Centre is one of Canada’s most productive shopping centres, with sales of $1,125 per square foot. The mall also features a number of upscale brands,including Tiffany & Co., Burberry, Tory Burch and Harry Rosen and this fall, Max Mara will open a mainline store on the mall’s ground level. 

Although not as upscale as Chinook Centre, sources say that Calgary’s Market Mall could also possibly house a Saks within Target’s former space. Like at Chinook Centre, the 120,500 square foot Market Mall Target space is centrally located within the centre. If Saks were to locate at Market Mall, upscale co-tenancies would likely be necessary, as the mall currently lacks many upscale brands available at Chinook Centre and other top Canadian retail centres. 


Given Saks parent company Hudson’s Bay Company’s relationship with Cadillac Fairview, sources say that ‘good’ Canadian Cadillac Fairview properties are fair game for a Saks location. Speculation persists that Montreal’s Carrefour Laval could eventually house Saks, and sources say that last year, Saks tried to secure space at Vancouver’s Pacific Centre. Although Richmond Centre in suburban Vancouver is Cadillac Fairview-owned, and although it features an empty 122,000 square foot former Sears space, sources confirm that another large, upscale retailer has already leased that Sears space, with an announcement expected to be made shortly. 

Saks Fifth Avenue’s first Canadian locations will open in a few months in Toronto – both in Cadillac Fairview-owned properties. Its Canadian flagship, measuring about 150,000 square feet, will open on four levels within the Toronto Eaton Centre Hudson’s Bay building. A second 130,000+ square foot Saks store will open at Sherway Gardens, in part of the retail space formerly occupied by the mall’s 225,000 square foot Sears. Both are expected to open in early 2016, if not earlier. Both locations will feature upscale grocery departments operated by Toronto-based Pusateri’s Fine Foods, unlike U.S. Saks stores which lack groceries. 
Saks Fifth Avenue will also open up to 25 of its off-price Saks Off 5th locations in Canada, and landlords from across the country tell us that they are in discussions with the retailer. Saks recently confirmed the locations of its first three Canadian Off 5th stores, all set to open in Ontario in early 2016. Several more are expected to be announced in the coming months as negotiations continue with landlords across the country. 

Article Author

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Publisher & CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Advisor at the University of Alberta School Centre for Cities and Communities in Edmonton, former lawyer and a public speaker. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for over 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees.

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