Truth be told, no other retail center in Miami has as much classic prestige as Bal Harbour Shops. But its fate had us fashion lovers on the edges of our seats after Louis Vuitton made the executive decision to end its 30-year run with Bal Harbour and open locations in Aventura Mall and The Design District. Christian Dior and Cartier soon followed, parting ways over a strict “radius” clause which limits tenants from opening additional stores within 20 miles of the Bal Harbour Shops. Was America’s most luxurious fashion center losing its panache?
One year and $600 million in sales later, the fate of Bal Harbour Shops has turned out to be just the opposite. It still remains one of the world’s most esteemed luxury centers, recently adding tenants such as CH Carolina Herrera, Balenciaga, Stella McCartney, and Lanvin. Alexander McQueen, Etro, and Montclair are all scheduled to open within the next few months.
However, it has been almost 30 years since Bal Harbour Shops’ last major move, and now it has its sights on one thing: expansion. The 450,000-square-foot mall has plans to increase its square footage by 200,000 feet, making room for a third anchor store and 36 smaller specialty stores. Brown Bagger’s rejoice — Bloomingdale's is in the forefront of the competition, however Nordstrom, Barneys New York, and Bergdorf Goodman have all been in consideration.
But expansion doesn’t come without consequences. Bal Harbour’s long-standing neighbor, Church by the Sea, is getting the boot and will be relocated to a new facility provided by Bal Harbour Shops. For the next wave in the major mall's history, expect more organic, outdoor space and an influx of South American brands — especially from Brazil. Design District, you scared? (WWD)
Photo: Via WWD and courtesy of Bal Harbour Shops.