Cirque du Soleil Announces Location of 1st Mall-Based Entertainment Centre 

Date:

Share post:

Montreal-based entertainment and theatrical company Cirque du Soleil plans to launch shopping centre-based family entertainment centres next year, with the first in the world set to open in September of 2019 at the Ivanhoé Cambridge– owned Vaughan Mills, north of Toronto. More locations are expanded in other Ivanhoé Cambridge properties, as well as potentially with other landlords. 

Maurizio Bevilacqua

The announcement was formally made during the City of Vaughan’s 2018 Mayor’s Gala on the evening of Thursday, June 21, with Vaughan Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua saying, “After much media speculation, I am proud to announce that Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group and real estate developer, Ivanhoé Cambridge, owner of Vaughan Mills, have chosen Vaughan to be home to the world’s first-ever indoor CREACTIVE family entertainment centre, which is scheduled to open in September 2019 at Vaughan Mills.”

Mr. Bevilacqua went on to say, “CREACTIVE will be a first of its kind, an innovative concept of indoor family entertainment experiences specially designed by Cirque du Soleil for retail locations, like Vaughan Mills. It will add to Vaughan’s already thriving tourism, creative arts, entertainment and recreation industries. Our city is known for its commitment, appreciation and celebration of arts and culture. We are blessed and enriched by diversity – our people speak 105 different languages. It will be here in Vaughan, where families can stretch their imagination and embrace the grandeur of being a Cirque du Soleil performer.

The city of Vaughan is one of Canada’s fastest growing communities. Incorporated in 1991, the city now boasts a population of 335,000 — that’s larger than cities such as Saskatoon and Regina, not to mention most cities in Canada’s Maritime Provinces. The Greater Toronto Area is home to more than six-million residents, and is said to be growing by more than 100,000 people annually. Vaughan recently became connected to Toronto via the TTC subway network, which extended past Toronto’s borders for the first time with the opening of two stations north of York University. 

The intention of such entertainment centres is to further drive foot traffic to malls, as landlords seek to create ‘community hubs’ that include various non-retail uses. In some respects, West Edmonton Mall got it right the first time — create an engaging destination that includes multiple uses that include retail, and give consumers a series of experiences that will also have them coming back for more.

Vaughan Mills, as well, already has a Legoland Discovery Centre — Cirque will be another family-friendly attraction for the busy centre. 

VAUGHAN MILLS. PHOTO: IVANHOÉ CAMBRIDGE
Zebras from O

CREACTIVE is described as being an “immersive, creative and participative family experience”, where visitors “can stretch their imagination, flex their muscles, explore newfound circus skills, and take a bow on the virtual Cirque du Soleil stage”. The Vaughan Mills location is expected to span nearly 25,000 square feet when finished, and will offer a range of acrobatic, artistic and other Cirque du Soleil-inspired recreational activities such as bungee jumping, aerial parkour, wire and trampolines, mask design, juggling, circus track activities, and dance.

“Our fans regularly express their wish to experience Cirque du Soleil from an insider’s perspective, to peek behind the curtain and imagine themselves stepping into our artists’ shoes. With CREACTIVE, we make that possible by inviting families to jump on stage, offering them another way to explore our creativity beyond our live shows”, said Marie-Josée Lamy, Cirque du Soleil’s Producer of CREACTIVE.

Cirque du Soleil already operates two highly successful outdoor theme parks along the same lines —  Club Med CREACTIVE by CIRQUE DU SOLEIL has locations at Club Med locations in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic and in Opio, France. 

Ivanhoé Cambridge is reimagining its retail properties as experiential destinations. In an earlier interview, the company’s president, Claude Sirois, explained how malls are becoming a “collection of experiences” and how “brick and mortar is here to stay”, provided that it includes what consumers are actually looking for. CREACTIVE is the second major announcement for the landlord in less than a month, after announcing in late May that it had struck a partnership  to open a Time Out Food Market at its Montreal Eaton Centre project — one of only a handful worldwide (currently there’s just one, in Lisbon Portugal). 

Cirque du Soleil confirms that it’s negotiating for other locations with other partners, and that it’s also in discussions with Ivanhoé Cambridge for additional locations in Canada as well. 

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.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

More From The Author

RECENT RETAIL INSIDER VIDEOS

Advertisment

Subscribe to the Newsletter

Subscribe

* indicates required

Related articles

Food Preferences in Canada Changing as Millennial and Gen Z Demographics Shift [Op-Ed]

Sylvain Charlebois discusses Canada's aging population and how younger consumers are shifting the grocery food landscape.

Henry Singer Unveils Downtown Edmonton Flagship Store at the ICE District, Featuring a Bar, Barber and Shoe Shine [Photos/Interview]

Jordan Singer discusses how the upscale menswear retailer recently relocated its Edmonton flagship store from Manulife Place into a 10,000 square foot space at the base of Western Canada's tallest building.

Canadian Retail Sales Dip: Year-End Drop in Discretionary Spending [J.C. Williams Group Analysis]

2023 Canadian retail sales ended in a lacklustre way, with controlled consumer spending amid a tumultuous year.

Landlord QuadReal Launches Pickleball Courts in Commercial Properties to Create Consumer Experience [Interview/Photos]

The initiative helps revitalize and re-imagine spaces using sustainable development practices, while incorporating the latest technology to enhance the visitor experience, blending physical and digital elements.

Canadian Consumers Willing to Switch Grocery Stores while Seeking Bargains: Study [Op-Ed]

Sylvain Charlebois says that a new survey offers a rigorous look into the preferences and behaviours shaping the future of grocery shopping in Canada.

Iconic Flo’s Diner in Toronto’s Yorkville Forced to Close After 33 Years Amid Landlord Dispute 

Retail Insider interviewed Flo’s co-owner who discusses the “heart wrenching” situation where he is being forced to close his business that began on Bellair Street in 1991.

Anatomy of a Leader: Teresa Spinelli, Owner of Alberta-Based Italian Centre Shop Ltd.

Spinelli discusses her leadership of the popular retailer which has expanded over the years, describing how she struggled to run the company at first and grew to love it.

Upscale Canadian Fashion Brand SMYTHE Expands with New Standalone Calgary Store [Interview/Photos]

It's the second store location for the Toronto-based brand, which is seeing success with its exclusive womenswear collections.

Toronto’s CF Sherway Gardens Hits Sales Milestone with Exciting Retail Growth and Future Plans [Interview]

The shopping centre is adding new retailers as sales per square foot hit an all-time high, with plans to re-tenant Nordstorm as foot traffic grows following Eataly's opening in the mall a few months ago.

ECS Coffee Opens Canada’s Largest Coffee and Espresso Equipment Gear Showroom and Retail Space in Toronto [Interview]

The new Etobicoke location is unique to Canada if not North America, according to its founder, with coffee roasting, equipment showroom, over 500 varieties of coffee, Youtube studio and various in-store experiences. He has plans to expand the concept nationally.

New Loblaws City Market Opens in Vancouver’s ‘The Post’ Building, Adding Grocery Competition to the Downtown Core [Podcast]

Craig and Lee discuss the opening of a new Loblaws City Market in downtown Vancouver's renovated Post building, and they explore its potential impact on local grocery shopping.

Loblaw Announces $2 Billion Investment in Canada for 2024 with Dozens of New Stores and 7,500 New Jobs [Expert Comment]

The retail behemoth will be growing substantially this year, following backlash over profits as inflation continues to impact Canadians.