Ala Moana to get 11 new retailers
Eleven retailers, including several that are new to Hawaii, will open at Ala Moana Center in time for the holiday rush.
The center says the new stores could help it bounce back from a recent dip in the number of local shoppers, at a time when holiday sales are expected to be down across the nation.
Ruehl No. 925, the latest brand from Abercrombie & Fitch; Harry Winston, known as a celebrity jeweler; and Romano's Macaroni Grill, which specializes in Tuscan-inspired entrees, are opening their first Hawaii locations in Ala Moana this fall.
Mall shoppers get increased choices
Ala Moana Center is in the process of opening 11 new stores or restaurants this fall.
Alfred Dunhill (opened Monday): English luxury accessories for men, including wallets, pocket accessories, luggage, belts and leather pieces
Barnes & Noble (opened Wednesday): Books, music, DVDs, magazines and cafe serving Starbucks coffee
Harry Winston: Fine diamond jewelry, engagement and wedding rings, colored stone pieces and timepieces
Mani Pedi Spa: Spa manicures and pedicures, airbrushing services, acrylic nails and products from top manicure cosmetics companies
The Pacific Place Tea Garden Cafe: Open-air cafe with daily afternoon tea service showcasing specially blended teas
Puma: Footwear, apparel and accessories
Quizno's Subs: Toasted sandwiches
Romano's Macaroni Grill: Tuscan-inspired entrees, classic Italian pasta dishes, grilled specialties and pizza with exhibition kitchens in full view of the dining room
Ruehl No. 925: New brand from Abercrombie & Fitch that offers casual-style clothing and accessories with a Greenwich Village attitude
Up and Riding: Surf wear and surf- and ocean-themed gifts for children
World of Charms: Traditional charms for bracelets and necklaces in gold, silver and platinum designs
Other stores including Barnes & Noble, which opened on Wednesday, and Alfred Dunhill, Puma, Quizno's Subs and World of Charms, plan to offer additional Hawaii locations. Kamaaina retailers Mani Pedi Spa; Up and Riding, which offers surf wear and gifts for children; and the Pacific Place Tea Garden Cafe also are slated to open at the center.
This is the first major shot in the arm for Ala Moana since last November's roll-out of multiple stores in the former J.C. Penney space, said Sharon James, regional vice president of marketing for Ala Moana Center.
The new stores, which are scattered throughout the center, are expected to boost holiday sales at a time when retailers throughout the United States are still feeling the pinch from Hurricane Katrina. In recent weeks, Ala Moana Center has seen revenues drop as a result of increased shipping costs and fewer local shoppers, James said.
"We've probably seen a small decrease in our local customer base, but the market is starting to stabilize," James said. "The new shops and restaurants will just give customers an additional reason to check the center out."
With the expected revenue boost from the new retailers, Hawaii's top-performing mall expects to see single-digit increases in sales throughout the holiday season, James said.
"Everything is fresh and new and we're optimistic," she said.
Even strong shopping centers like Ala Moana have to continually offer consumers something new to keep pace with all of the retail repositioning on Oahu, especially in Waikiki at the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center, the International Marketplace and the Outrigger Beach Walk on Lewers Street, said retail consultant Stephany Sofos.
"Ala Moana is looking toward the future and saying, 'This is our market share, and if we don't keep redefining ourselves, people will get bored.'"
The introduction of Harry Winston shows that even though rising gas prices have made it tough for consumers all over, at least there is still faith that Hawaii's high-end market is here to stay, she said.
"Harry Winston is a very high-scale retailer that does really well in markets like New York, San Francisco and L.A.," Sofos said. "It's huge that they are coming to Hawaii because it shows confidence in our market."