Aritzia to Double Size of Yorkdale Store in Toronto Amid Retail Expansion [Interview]

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Retailer Aritzia is planning to open its redesigned and redeveloped store in the Yorkdale Shopping Centre in time for the holiday shopping season.

And the location will include its unique new A-OK Café concept.

Karen Janes

“Our current boutique is approximately 10,000 square feet, and we are increasing its square footage by almost 9,000 square feet for a total of almost 20,000 square feet. We have been in the Centre since 1999. Our space at that time was nearly 5,000 square feet and in 2017 we moved to our current space,” said Karen Janes, Executive Vice President, Real Estate boutique Development, for Aritzia.

“The biggest key feature will be the large wrap-around video screen at the exterior of the boutique. Other key features include Aritzia’s exclusive A-OK Café and two-storey brick arches on the boutique front facade, one-of-a-kind vintage furniture from Italy, Denmark and France, open concept fitting rooms with two private shopping areas, and hand painted sales floor and ceiling covered murals. 

“The construction for the expansion will be phased, but we are aiming to open the majority of the space by the holiday season this year.”

Future Aritzia Expansion at Yorkdale Shopping Centre (Image: Dustin Fuhs)
Nike, Old Navy, H&M, Zara, Massimo Dutti and the Future Aritzia Expansion at Yorkdale Shopping Centre (Image: Dustin Fuhs)

Janes said the retailer currently has 112 boutiques, with 68 permanent boutiques in Canada and 44 in the United States, complementing its digital boutique Aritzia.com.

In the past year it has opened one new boutique in Canada at Montreal Premium Outlets in Mirabel, Quebec and six new boutiques in the United States.

She said the company has a total of six planned openings for the rest of 2022: three expansions which include the Markville Shopping Centre in Markham, Ontario; CF Polo Park in Winnipeg and Washington Square in Portland as well as three new boutiques at Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto, California, Fashion Outlets of Chicago and Shops at La Cantera in San Antonio.

Aritzia Westfield (Image: Aritzia)
Aritzia Fairview (Image: Aritzia)

“With every expansion and opening, our goal is to provide our clients with an aspirational environment. Many of the elements and design ideas will be integrated in future boutiques in an organic way,” explained Janes. 

“When we think about expanding our footprint, we look at premier locations that provide us the runway to connect with both new and existing clients through engaging service, beautiful product and aspirational environments. As we look ahead, we are well-positioned and excited for continued growth through the expansion of our boutiques across both Canada and the US.

“We opened our first boutique in Ontario at Yorkdale in 1999 and have gained many loyal clients here. By expanding our Yorkdale location, we are able to share our beautiful product, aspirational space and provide a one-of-a-kind Everyday Luxury shopping experience with our clients. The opportunity to expand in place allows us to offer our clients greater product assortment, more tailored services, and the addition of our A-OK Café concept.”

A-OK at Aritzia Somerset (Image: Aritzia)
A-OK at Aritzia Somerset (Image: Aritzia)

The retailer describes itself as a design house with an innovative global platform. 

“We are creators and purveyors of Everyday Luxury, home to an extensive portfolio of exclusive brands for every function and individual aesthetic. We’re about good design, quality materials and timeless style – all with the wellbeing of our People and Planet in mind,” added Janes.

“Founded in 1984, in Vancouver, Canada, our world-class team creates immersive, and highly personal shopping experiences in our 100+ boutiques throughout North America and at aritzia.com to everyone, everywhere.”

Article Author

Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi
Mario Toneguzzi, based in Calgary, has more than 40 years experience as a daily newspaper writer, columnist, and editor. He worked for 35 years at the Calgary Herald covering sports, crime, politics, health, faith, city and breaking news, and business. He is the Senior News Editor with Retail Insider in addition to working as a freelance writer and consultant in communications and media relations/training. Mario was named as a RETHINK Retail Top Retail Expert in 2024.

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