CURATED RETAIL: Construction on Free Market — a shopping concept that’s one-part gallery and another part boutique experience — is set to begin this summer.
The 10,000-square-foot space is part of Los Angeles developer The Ratkovich Company’s 1.8 million-square-foot mixed-use project The Bloc, which is under construction and set for a fall opening.
CNTRLgroup, which was behind the Apolis and Alchemy Works stores in Los Angeles, is heading up the Free Market project.
The concept is expected to be a space for large and small men’s and women’s apparel brands, home and food concepts among other businesses. Details on the tenants are expected in the coming months.
It will be consistent with the overall vision of the Bloc, which developer Wayne Ratkovich described to WWD late last year as one that would offer visitors a “unique experience.”
“Food will be important to the project. Fashion will be important to the project,” he said at the time. “We’re looking at this project as a place that people want to be. They want to visit. It is something that is attractive not just because there is a shop there or a shop here, but because of the experience when you come here.”
Wingtip, which bills itself as a purveyor of “solutions for the modern gentlemen,” was confirmed last year as one of the incoming Bloc tenants. The company sells men’s clothing, leather goods and cigars, among other items.
The Bloc will be Wingtip’s second location after San Francisco, where it was founded.
Some $180 million is being spent on renovations to create the open-air Bloc in what includes the former Macy’s Plaza indoor mall. That includes work on the 250,000-square-foot Macy’s, which is being turned into one of the chain’s flagship locations with the addition of a furniture department and expanded cosmetics, housewares and textiles offerings.
Other project anchors include a 485-room Sheraton Los Angeles Downtown Hotel and a 750,000-square-foot office tower.