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The Secret will soon be unveiled


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POSTED: Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The glass storefront of Hawaii's first Victoria's Secret is polished and shiny, an iridescent pink, while the floors dazzle, and a corset-shaped chandelier hangs above.

Hawaii's first Victoria's Secret store opens tomorrow, nearly two years after it was first announced, and at least a decade since customers in the isles have been anticipating it.

Victoria's Secret, which includes PINK next door with its own separate entrance, will offer a broad selection of bras, panties and sleepwear including the Very Sexy, Angels, Body by Victoria, Sexy Little Things and BioFit private-label collections.

PINK, which caters to a younger, college-age crowd, is more casual, featuring bras, panties, sweats, hoodies and tees.

The store measures about 18,500 square feet, between LEGO and Bebe on Level 2 of the Sears Wing of Ala Moana Center.

Gap and the Disney Store, which formerly occupied the space, have since moved to other locations in the mall.

                       
THE SECRET'S OUT
        » Location: Ala Moana Center, Level 2, Sears Wing
        » Size: 18,500 square feet
        » Opening day: Tomorrow, 9:30 a.m.
        » Hires: 300 full-time and part-time associates
        » Web site: VictoriasSecret.com
        » Special event: Victoria's Secret Angel Marisa Miller will sign autographs for customers, 4-6 p.m.
        more coverage
        » Isle residents can enter Victoria's Secret's Model Search. Tomorrow in Today.

The interior of Victoria's Secret Ala Moana is decorated in a "black cherry" theme of blacks and pinks, signature stripes and a brightly lit Bra Salon as well as Panty Boutique. In the back, the store features a beauty bar with the VS Makeup collection and fragrances.

Victoria's Secret at Ala Moana also will offer a concierge desk, online kiosks, fitting rooms with a personal call button, and a VIP fitting room.

A total of 300 full-time and part-time associates were hired for the store, including several management positions.

Victoria's Secret has been on Ala Moana Center owner General Growth Properties' wish list for many years.

Retail analyst Stephany Sofos said Hawaii residents have been talking about Victoria's Secret opening in the state for at least 15 years, and it is sure to be a hit.

"There's a pent-up demand," said Sofos, who expects a line outside the door tomorrow.

"Every woman will be excited because we all like to feel good about ourselves. Fine lingerie is one of the ways you feel good about yourself."

Sofos classified Victoria's Secret as a lifestyle store, associated with luxury and ambience.

"It makes you feel special," she said. "In these economic times it's nice to feel special."

The Hawaii store will carry swimwear—which used to be available only online or by catalog—year-round.

There is also sleepwear and sportswear, including yoga pants and sports bras.

Victoria's Secret Ala Moana is a prototype of its newest store, which features the glass storefront and dazzling floors. A gallery of supermodels is featured throughout the store in black and white.

The PINK section features some only-in-Hawaii decor, like surfboards and leis on mannequins. A maile lei is also draped around a stuffed, polka-dotted dog, PINK's mascot.

Columbus, Ohio-based Limited Brands, which acquired Victoria's Secret in 1982, also owns Bath & Body Works, White Barn Candle Co. and Henri Bendel.

Following the Hawaii store opening, Victoria's Secret opens another boutique in Chicago later next month. Nationwide there are more than 1,000 stores.