A large Rolex store will be replacing Cole Haan on Bloor Street in Toronto according to sources. The store will be operated by Royal de Versailles jewellers and could become one of the largest Rolex stores in North America when it opens.
Rolex will occupy the corner retail space of 101 Bloor Street West, located at the southwest corner of Bloor and St. Thomas Streets. The building which includes an office tower also contains multi-brand jewellery retailer Royal de Versailles which currently operates a 700 square foot Rolex boutique space with a small facade and signage on Bloor Street.
That presence for Rolex will expand substantially this year with the new standalone corner store by Royal de Versailles which will be a welcome addition to the rapidly changing Bloor Street retail offering.
Rolex will occupy about 1,850 square feet of the former ground floor of the Cole Haan space which spans just over 2,700 square feet. A listing showed a basement level available with over 2,800 square feet of space. DWSV Realty listed the space.
Cole Haan shut its only standalone full-priced Canadian store just before Christmas, and the space has been cleared out in anticipation of construction for the new tenant. Cole Haan opened on Bloor Street in 1991 to fanfare along with other US-based brands including Tiffany & Co. and Talbots.
In the immediate area, several developments will change retail on Bloor Street. Urban Toronto recently reported that the row of stores on Bloor across St. Thomas Street from the new Rolex store will be redeveloped with a tall residential tower with over 12,000 square feet of retail space at its base. Across the street, the block including the current Harry Rosen store and 80 Bloor W. office tower will also see a significant tower development that has been approved.
Bloor Street has seen several recent changes on its luxury stretch between Bay Street and Avenue Road. The Zegna store, operated in partnership with Harry Rosen, shut in December after operating for about 2.5 years at 100 Bloor Street West next to Hermes. Other new retailers opening on Bloor Street this year include Lafayette 148 at 130 Bloor Street West (negotiated by DWSV Realty representing both the landlord and tenant) as well as Anne Fontaine and Paris Baguette at 110 Bloor Street West. More negotiations are said to be underway and Retail Insider will follow these stories.
But that will they sell? Why is so much space needed to display 4 ladies watches? Is the back half of the store to keep the waitlist?