Nordstrom’s path to its new 138,000-square-foot store at Fashion Island shopping center in Orange County, Calif., had a few potholes.
There were concerns about cannibalization because one of the retailer’s three highest-performing stores is about 6 miles from Fashion Island at South Coast Plaza. President of merchandising Pete Nordstrom, who knew Orange County as a shoe buyer in the Eighties and as a regional manager in the Nineties, had reservations about Fashion Island. In those days, “It didn’t strike me as being a super dynamic retailing spot,” he said.
But the uneasiness was outweighed by a $100 million renovation of the shopping center, which is to be completed by the holiday season, the lure of Orange County’s trend-conscious shoppers and an inability to expand at South Coast Plaza.
A pair of other Nordstrom stores in the county, Irvine Spectrum Center and The Shops at Mission Viejo, “have done well and have not seemed to hurt South Coast much,” Pete Nordstrom said. “Traditionally, you wouldn’t probably do that in terms of cannibalization, but given the robust nature of target customers for us and the dynamics of tourism [in the county], it is unique and so the conventional rules of how far you put your stores goes out the window.”
The two-level Fashion Island store, which opened April 16, replaces an 80,000-square-foot Macy’s women’s unit that closed after the retailer’s 2006 merger with Federated Department Stores. Nordstrom joins Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s and Neiman Marcus as the 1.5-million-square-foot complex’s anchors.
Keith Eyrich, president of Fashion Island owner Irvine Co.’s retail properties, pursued Nordstrom for the better part of a decade, believing its offerings would appeal to what he described as Fashion Island’s “sophisticated, well-educated and affluent” customers.
The improvements to the 43-year-old shopping center add about 200,000 square feet, refine the Mediterranean architectural look, enhance common spaces with lawns and fountains and repave walkways.
Eyrich has sought to create a merchandise mix with retailers of national and local interest. Flanking Nordstrom are new stores Fluxus, the Los Angeles-based brand designed by Jeffrey Sebelia, and local favorite Michael Nusskern. Other stores that have opened recently include Trina Turk, Michael Stars, True Religion, Dita Legends and Y-3. Forever 21 will triple the size of its Fashion Island location this summer.
Pete Nordstrom doesn’t expect the store to match the sales of the South Coast Plaza unit. “That doesn’t mean it won’t be a good store,” he said. In Nordstrom’s portfolio, “It is completely safe to assume it should be a top half performer.”
@zacposen's go-to holiday gift? Cookies! "I'll usually bake cookies and send them as a gift," said the designer, who recently released his cookbook "Cooking With Zac: Recipes from Rustic to Refined." Get the recipe for his Brown Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies via link in bio 🍪🍪🍪 #wwdeye #cookingwithzac
For @monsemaison’s pre-fall 2018 collection, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim honed in on the brand’s many signatures — men’s wear, which was tweaked and feminized through deconstruction, proportion play and lots of bare shoulders. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
On Friday night, @yohjiyamamotoofficial received the Design for Asia Lifetime Achievement Award in Hong Kong. The 75-year-old designer has been celebrated for many years and is best known for his dark and avant-garde tailoring. “In my long career, in design, architecture, [I’ve been to] so many parties, this is the very first time that I have such a warm feeling, I really appreciate this,” Yamamoto said. #wwdfashion (📷: @dominiquemaitre)
Discovery is collaborating with British pop artist @philipcolbert on a new line of clothing and accessories called Discovery Shark. The collection, which will launch next summer for Shark Week’s 30th anniversary, features a whimsical line of women’s and men’s bomber jackets, sweatshirts, bags and more. #wwdfashion
“I’m always a big champion of a female rapper, and I’m glad to see a new voice that feels unique and authentic that’s coming up, and I think we’re going to see more great things from her,” said @itsjeremyscott about @iamcardib, who performed at @moschino’s Art Basel Miami Beach party last night. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
@janellemonae’s “What’s Your Frequency?” room in @refinery29's #29Rooms made its debut this week at the opening of the Los Angeles art exhibit. “It’s about the ongoing conversation around mass surveillance, the weaponization of technology and cultural uniformity. My space was created so that we can come together and talk about the complexities of our humanity,” said Monáe. #wwdeye (📷: @bucknerphoto)
@pantone announced their Color of the Year 2018: Ultra Violet. Nearly 20 months after the musician Prince’s death, fashion is having a purple moment. Varying shades of purple appeared on spring or fall runways, from @christopherkane to @calvinklein. @gucci’s Alessandro Michele bathed his fall runway in ultra violet-colored light at one point. Pantone 18-3838 is meant to “push the boundaries of what inspires us to look upward and outward to the future.” #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)