The 10 largest outlet malls in Europe, in terms of gross leasable space.
While the quest for bargains is universal, Europe is just getting into the game in earnest. It’s taken longer to develop outlet centers in Europe because building permits are more difficult to obtain than in the U.S., according to mall owners. Europeans also have a different shopping mentality. “It took a while for Europeans to get used to the concept of driving an hour to go shopping,” said Linsey Wooldridge, marketing director of McArthurGlen, which owns the largest outlet mall in Europe, in Serravalle, Italy. “Europeans travel less and most don’t want to spend more than 30 to 40 minutes in their cars.” Besides, Wooldridge added, European shoppers have only started looking for value. But now that they’ve had a taste of the joys of finding discounted Prada handbags and Burberry scarves, there’s no turning back. Outlet malls are cropping up everywhere, while existing centers are getting bigger all the time.
1. MCARTHURGLEN SERRAVALLE, Serravalle, Italy Gross Leasable Space: 355,661 square feet Opened: 2000 Total number of stores: 139 Selected stores: Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Etro, Bulgari, Polo Ralph Lauren Special features: Europe’s largest outlet center, whose design is inspired by an 18th-century Ligurian town center, has shops off small squares and meandering streets.
2. MCARTHURGLEN CHESHIRE OAKS, Cheshire, U.K. Gross Leasable Space: 344,403 square feet Opened: 1995 Total number of stores: 134 Selected stores: Burberry, Calvin Klein Jeans, Episode Special features: The largest outlet center in the U.K. includes an outdoor play area for children, a multiscreen cinema and bowling alley. The Coliseum, a full-scale entertainment complex, is within walking distance.
3. MARQUES AVENUE, Troyes, France Gross Leasable Space: 322,900 square feet Opened: 1993 Total number of stores: 100 Selected stores: Hugo Boss, Gerard Darel, Rip Curl, Marlboro Classics, Reebok, Charles Jourdan Special features: Marques Avenue is France’s biggest outlet center. In addition to fashion, there are 30 home furnishing stores.4. THE LOWRY, Manchester, U.K. Gross Leasable Space: 320,000 square feet Opened: 2001 Total number of stores: 85 Selected stores: Marks & Spencer, Nike, Mexx, Sergio Tacchini, Reebok Special features: Includes the largest Nike outlet in Europe.
5. THE GALLERIA OUTLET CENTER, Hatfield, U.K. Gross Leasable Space: 300,000 square feet Opened: 1995 Total number of stores: 89 Selected stores: Marks & Spencer, TK Maxx (owned by TJX Cos. Inc.) Special features: The Galleria is the closest major outlet center to London.
6. MCARTHURGLEN LIVINGSTON, Livingston, U.K. Gross Leasable Space: 290,489 square feet Opened: 2000 Total number of stores: 103 Selected stores: Calvin Klein Jeans, Burberry, Armani Collections Special features: The mall is big on aesthetics, from a 300-foot-tall dome that took more than 100,000 square feet of glass to build, to Japanese artist Susumu Shingu’s water sculpture, “Birth of Sky.”
7. FOXTOWN FACTORY STORES, Mendrisio, Switzerland Gross Leasable Space: 290,000 square feet Opened: 1995 Total number of stores: 130 Selected stores: Gucci, Prada, Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana, Valentino, Salvatore Ferragamo, Versace Special features: FoxTown houses a large selection of luxury stores and there’s a casino nearby.
8. FRANCIACORTA OUTLET VILLAGE, Brescia, Italy Gross Leasable Space: 269,000 square feet Opened: First phase, 2002 Total number of stores: 120 when completed Selected stores: Levi’s-Dockers, Stefanel, Versace, Nike Special features: Designed around a 16th-century farmhouse, the outlet has a prime location, one hour from Milan and 90 minutes west of Venice.
9. MCARTHURGLEN YORK, York, U.K. Gross Leasable Space: 244,882 square feet Opened: 1998 Total number of stores: 107 Selected stores: Hugo Boss, Burberry, Giorgio Armani, Calvin Klein Jeans Special features: The outlet, which was originally a hospital, had more than 3 million visitors last year.
10. MCARTHURGLEN BRIDGEND, Bridgend, Wales Gross Leasable Space: 230,000 square feet Opened: 1998 Total number of stores: 91 Selected stores: Marks & Spencer, Liz Claiborne, Mexx, Nike, Reebok, Calvin Klein Jeans, Lee Cooper Special features: Bridgend, the largest outlet mall in Wales, is not far from the Oakwood Park theme park.SOURCE: ORIGINAL REPORTING BY EMILIE MARSH, WWD, PARIS
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