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Cincinnati: Retail News

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  Here is a response I received from Federated in response to a Cincinnati Bloomingdales.

 

Thank you, Mr. XXXXX,  for your observation on locating a Bloomingdale's in downtown Cincinnati.

 

 

As you can imagine, we are constantly receiving proposals for new

 

Bloomingdale's stores from developers, cities and other interested parties

 

who feel about the Bloomies nameplate as you do. While this recognition of

 

the Bloomingdale's brand is obviously flattering, the reality is that there

 

are relatively few markets that can economically and demographically

 

sustain a Bloomingdale's, and Cincinnati unfortunately is not one of them.

 

 

Nordstrom's did not build here for a reason, and Saks recently required a

 

$6 million subsidy from the city in order to keep its downtown store open.

 

Federated built the new downtown Lazarus-Macy's store in the late 1990s as

 

our contribution to the city's efforts to maintain a viable retail core in

 

the downtown area, but the hard reality is that were we not headquartered

 

here, it is questionable whether we would have made that commitment.

 

 

 

There are any number of interesting and exciting proposals for restoring

 

vibrancy in Cincinnati's downtown core, but most are focused on centering

 

recreational activities downtown as a regional draw. This is something that

 

retail once provided. Significant demographic changes taking place in the

 

latter half of the last century, however, altered the perceptions and uses

 

of downtowns, both here and elsewhere across the country.

 

 

 

I trust this is responsive to your inquiry, and thank you for taking the

 

time to share your ideas with us.

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Here is my reply

 

XXX XXXXXXX,

 

First of all I appreciate you taking the time out of your schedule to reply to me with an educated response and not the standard courtesy response. It is quit frustrating that Federated does not see Cincinnati as a viable market for Bloomingdales. Cincinnati is home to one of the most exclusive towns in the US in Indian Hill yet Cincinnati lacks, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom's and Bloomingdales. Cincinnati Metro as a whole is growing at 9% and has attracted young families like mine to the region. We didn't move to Cincinnati in June because of family or because of job relocation. We moved to Cincinnati because we thought it was a great and exciting place to live. It was only after I fell in love with Cincinnati that I found a good paying job in Dayton (previous military experience, hence Wright Patt area) with that and the desire to live in Cincinnati, we found Mason as an attractive city to live but still practical with my commute. My wife and I are 27, have a 5 year old daughter and have never been bored once in the metro. I am originally from New York and am familiar with Bloomingdales as my mom like most women loves the store. I moved from St. Louis after spending 5 years their and as Cincinnati is a far healthier and enjoyable city to live in, it lacks the shopping that St. Louis has although they were all located in the St. Louis suburbs. I am aware that St. Louis is home to your rival in May Department stores but they at least invested more in their metro with brands like Lord and Taylor.

 

I am baffled of the cynical nature of Cincinnatians but when I see the news (TV, Newspaper, WLW) all I hear is how Cincinnati is losing it's youth or the commonly referred (Brain Drain) comment. I understand Cincinnati has issues. I hope the race issues can be addressed. I hope Article 12 will be revoked and help remove one half of the grey cloud over the city but on another note Cincinnati is an exciting place to live. I would like to see it as a exciting place to shop. Development is happening all over the region but it seems to be in the form of strip malls/malls from the Deerfield Lifestyle Centre (That I am not happy about) to Forest Fair Mall being rebuilt as Cincinnati Mills to Millworks in Oakley to the Kentucky side booming with Newport on the Levee and Hofbrauhaus. I would like to see downtown Cincinnati become a destination again. All this development in the region while nice only hurts downtown. Tower Place is not a destination. Everything in Tower Place is in the burbs. People will drive an hour and a half to Easton Towne Center to shop. Let’s keep the money here and bring other metro’s population to our city to shop. We have to be progressive.

 

I am aware of the going joke that if Cincinnati gets it, that it must be everywhere else. Cheesecake Factory just opened up in Cincinnati and that is great but Cincinnati was the 3rd city in the state to get it.

 

Think about the statement a Bloomingdales would make with an announcement of a downtown store. Nordstrom's wouldn't be as much as a destination as Bloomingdales. Nordstrom's is located in downtown Indy and Columbus (Easton Towne Centre). The closest Bloomingdales is over 4 hours away.

 

Here is a list of the top 15 richest suburbs according to median home value.

 

01. Indian Hill 1,051,788

02. Mt. Adams 397,526

03. Sycamore Township 347,101

04. Amberly 340,464

05. Montgomery 324,377

06. Hyde Park 306,442

07. Loveland 296,215 (Clermont Co)

08. Glendale 295,496

09. Evendale 293,758

10. Wyoming 282,847

11. Verona, KY 282,776

12. Mariemont 280,457

13. Mt. Lookout 278,702

14. Mason 264,094

15. Sharonville 260,472

 

There is plenty of money, trendy people and shopping enthusiasts in the region to make it a success and with Sax and Lazarus downtown, it would only increase business for everybody and makes downtown more of a destination. Lazarus-Macy’s while nice to have downtown in reality is all over the metro. Bloomingdales would be a destination and would draw from Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Lexington, Louisville, etc...

 

I hope you take my rambling seriously and maybe conduct an in house study to look at Cincinnati a bit more seriously. I have lived in New York, Orlando area, San Antonio, Sacramento, and St. Louis before picking Cincinnati as the city I wanted to raise my family with no strings attached and I definitely see a market for your store; I just hope it isn’t in West Chester (The growing trend). Let’s keep the tax base downtown.

 

Thank you for your time,

 

XXXXX

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From what I hear, Mr. (Mrs.?) XXXXXXX is a pretty tough sell, though! :D

 

In all seriousness, good luck. I'm sure they have in-house people crunching demographic numbers all day long, but I'd like to hear what he/she has to say to someone who's not going to just get frustrated and give up.

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As soon as i read this article I asked my mom(cause she would be the shopper in the family) if she would go downtown to a Bloomingdales. She said she definately would and she said she would spend a couple thousand a year there. I am sure there are PLENTY of other moms(and other people) who would spend their money at Bloomingdales

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^ My mom has been looking at Cincinnati as a possible second home from Florida. I am sure a Boomingdales downtown would only add to her decision to spend the summer months here. Funny but true :)

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Here's an article from today's Enquirer:

 

Abercrombie closing Rookwood stores

Lisa Biank Fasig

Enquirer Staff Reporter

 

Abercrombie & Fitch is closing its two stores at Rookwood Commons, after the owner of the center suggested the retailer vacate to make way for more suitable tenants. The Abercrombie Kids store closed last week, and Abercrombie & Fitch will close Jan. 21, said Mark Fallon, director of leasing at Jeffrey R. Anderson Real Estate. New York & Co., a contemporary women's fashion chain, will replace the kids store, and an unidentified better women's fashion store will replace Fitch.

 

www.enquirer.com

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Would that Tower City, The Galleria, or Center City had these problems!

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better women's

 

ok, this phrase is used twice in the article.  granted, i'm not up to date on everything in the marketing world, but what the hell does better women imply??

 

sounds shitty to me, and entirely appropo for the asphalt fiasco known as rookwood.

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to clarify, I think it's not "fashion for better women" but "better fashions" for women.  As in, you have some regular stuff, and then there's the stuff some might consider "better" - more prestigious name brand or designer, for example.

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That's how I understood it as well..."better" refers to "store", "fashions" and "homes".

 

I was watching channel 5 news last night and they were talking to a guy from Rookwood.  His quote (paraphrased):

"Let the malls babysit 'em.  I want their mothers, I don't want their kids."

 

Um, bro, you are a mall.

 

P.S> I wonder how much A&F got paid to not litigate, since Rookwood broke the terms of the lease.

 

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Not often a shopping center "convinces" a credit tenant like Abercrombie to leave.  The shopping center must be really hot.  Fudruckers was never a good choice for that location anyway.  Who goes there? 

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Went to rookwood last weekend if they want to get rid of the teenagers they should get rid of Old Navy.

 

I think that place really attracts moms.  ever go there?  it's 75% womens or childrens stuff.

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Williams-Sonoma plans new venture in Kenwood

Store will be company's sixth there

By Richard Curtis  Enquirer contributor

 

Williams-Sonoma Inc. can't seem to get enough of Kenwood Towne Centre. After opening its upscale Williams-Sonoma Home store there in early October, the company will open its sixth store, West Elm, at the region's high-end mall in February.

 

It will be the first West Elm location in Ohio. The 13,000-square-foot store will offer furniture and accessories that combine a popular trend - modern, geometric designs - with a softer color palette not traditionally associated with the contemporary look. Prices will be in the moderate range. For example, a basic 72-inch sofa, tightly upholstered in an olive or camel with brushed metal legs, retails for $799.

 

Read full article here:

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20051028/BIZ01/510280379/1076/

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west elm is merely a more expensive ikea. bland.

 

Its a far cry worse!  I had a friend who purchased a West Elm bed and while "christening" this new purchase - the bed broke - right at the height of passion!  :-o

 

I went to the WE in Brooklyn.  The accessories are OK.  The furniture is CRAP!  However, if it generates foot traffic and sales I'm all for putting on in downtown cleveland!  :|

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^Maybe they hadn't screwed it yet.

 

Trying to make that joke work, but can't.

 

Anyway, on move in day here at Miami a bunk bed collapsed because it hadn't been bolted yet, just slid into the grooves of the frame.

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Fresh Market coming to town

Upscale chain will open grocery stores in Oakley, Sycamore Twp. next year

Lisa Biank Fasig

Staff Reporter

 

 

The Fresh Market, a family-run chain of small grocery stores that bear resemblance to historic markets for their concentration on fresh produce, meat and fish, is entering the crowded Cincinnati retail market with stores in Oakley and Sycamore Township. Both locations are expected to open in 2006, though the Oakley store, the 20,000-square-foot former Jones the Florist on Madison Road, should open first. The second site, a similar-sized store in Sycamore Plaza, will follow sometime later in the year.

 

http://cincinnati.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/stories/2005/10/31/story6.html

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They are nice stores.  I had one in my neighborhood in Memphis.  They are also opening a store in Cleveland.

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^Maybe they hadn't screwed it yet.

 

Trying to make that joke work, but can't.

 

Anyway, on move in day here at Miami a bunk bed collapsed because it hadn't been bolted yet, just slid into the grooves of the frame.

 

Actually I thought that was pretty damn funny - but hell I have a sick warped sarcastic sense of humor!  :evil:  :-P  :evil:

 

I was told the "support"  under the matress broke...when the bed was returned, the sales people told them it was a "common occurence".  How is the that for brand quality??

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I have the simple metal bed that I ordered from the internet about a year ago, and was wondering how the quality was going to be, and was pleasantly surprised.  It's really sturdy.  However, I also visited the store in DUMBO(Brooklyn) and thought the wood furniture did look kinda cheap...but the price was in line with what you get.  It's not expensive, and sturdier than Ikea.  Might be a good fit in Tower City.

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I have the simple metal bed that I ordered from the internet about a year ago, and was wondering how the quality was going to be, and was pleasantly surprised.  It's really sturdy.  However, I also visited the store in DUMBO(Brooklyn) and thought the wood furniture did look kinda cheap...but the price was in line with what you get.  It's not expensive, and sturdier than Ikea.  Might be a good fit in Tower City.

 

NOt in towercity.  We need street level stores.  THere are 8000 people in the warehouse district or this is even a better fit by CSU or University Circle that could use a home store.

 

We don't need to suck anymore people off the city streets.

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They've been in Columbus for about a year now and man, Fresh Market is great. Their customer service is impeccable, if you wait in line for checkout they treat you like as if they have failed you. They have soft classical music, kinda like Panera music, played throughout the entire store. The lighting is soft and there are lots of plants and tile flooring, and that's just the ambiance. The food there is always fresh with among the most beautiful produce I've ever seen. I always go for the sushi, which is the same price as the boxed sushi one finds in Kroger or lunch shops, but it seriously tastes 10 times better. Yeah, you do pay a small premium for most other things, but it's definitely well worth it if you want true quality merchandise.

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Oakley is a hotbed right now and has to be the #1 neighborhood right now in Cincinnati for development, speculation of development and rising home prices.  I need to purchase a property there before it is too late.

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