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Lenox Square/Phipps Plaza

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Posted

Thes days, it's become 'aquire or die.' I'd hate to see Parisian go, but that's just business.

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Posted

*steeping on soapbox*

Let me get this straight.........first they lowered the bar and allowed a Parisians there years ago. I nearly died then. Luckily for Phipps, the Parisians there is several nothces above all other metro Atlanta Parisians. Still, to see Parisians there is odd. Thank heavens it's on the backside. After I get used to this idea now we are talking about a Belk? No offense to anyone who finds Belk pleasing but from what I know of Belk (they may have changed) it is not up to the level of a Parisians.....and definitely not fitting of the Phipps Plaza clientele.

When people are in Atlanta from other cities (many larger) they are drawn to the tourist traps known as Lenox Mall and Phipps Plaza. It would be quite odd explaining to relatives from New Jersey, San Diego. New York, Florida or Dallas why there is a Belk (if they even know what one is) in Atlanta's premier shopping destination. What next? Sears? JCPenny? Kohls? Dick's? While they are at it, they might as well put in Walmart. If you are going to lower the cache then go all out...let's make it your typical run of the mill mall.

*readjusting my broach as I get off my soapbox*

I'm sure Belk's is a nice store.

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Posted

I agree Lady Celeste. Belk would be an embarrasment to Phipps Plaza. While it does carry alot of the same things most other mid-priced department stores carry...I think that at least in the South it has a reputation of being a little less classy than your typical department store. And then to stick on at Phipps?

There are Belk stores in just about every little town in the Carolinas. Most of them in the smaller markets are small, one-level stores but they are just as common as the Dollar General in the SE. Lenox I could deal with....perhaps....but Phipps???

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Posted

Lady C

I couldn't agree more. I don't think it's a soap box thing; it's economics. That area has built itself around an image. Belk & Parisians are not up par.

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Posted

Even at Lenox I would find it odd....

Can you imagine this conversation?

*Wife on cellphone with husband*

Wife- Yes dear...I already called the caterer. Expect them around 3. Don't worry, your new business contacts will enjoy the dinner. - pauses as husband speaks- Oh yeah, I'll be there around 2:30. I'm going to take my fur to Neiman for summer storage. I will pick your watch up since I'll be at Cartier. The baby asked for a purse from Louis Vuitton. -pauses while husband speaks- yes dear, after that I will stop by Bloomingdales and pick up my dress and I will be sure to stop at Belks for that $10 shirt Brandon wanted. *sound of scratched record*

I just can't see it.

There are four malls I hope to never see a Belks....Lenox, Perimeter, Phipps or NorthPoint.

After I reread my comments, I feel like a class a witch....I'm sorry, I'm sure Belks is nice. Atlanta has lots of other malls they can go into. Greenbiar, Mall West End, Shannon, Southlake, Gwinnett Place, Northlake, Town Center, Toco Hill...just not Phipps, NorthPoint, Perimeter or Lenox.

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Posted

Without giving too much away, someone from Simon says they've had a plan for the Parisian location since the announcement that Saks was looking to sell. Even if George Jones and Spigoli Freeman won the bid for Parisian. It doesn't look like Parisian will stay. They might change their minds. Who knows?

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Posted (edited)

I invite all the Belk naysayers to Charlotte to shop at Belk SouthPark. I don't think Phipps will be lowered in status by Belk if they do come if they merchandise it like the SouthPark store.

Anyway, I figure Barneys will get that Parisian space...

Edited by StevenRocks

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Posted

I honestly cant imagine a Belk in Phipps Plaza.....i dont know whats worse, this news or the news of JCPenney opening at Columbiana Centre in Columbia! :wacko:

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Posted

I honestly cant imagine a Belk in Phipps Plaza.....i dont know whats worse, this news or the news of JCPenney opening at Columbiana Centre in Columbia! :wacko:

I think both are bad news, since both are the respective cities' premier malls, now anchored or possibly to be anchored by those kinds of stores.

The Belk at SouthPark is nice- about like the Lord & Taylor on Fifth Avenue- but still, it's Belk's- doesn't bring the most upscale image in the minds of Southern mall rats.

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Posted

I think both are bad news, since both are the respective cities' premier malls, now anchored or possibly to be anchored by those kinds of stores.

The Belk at SouthPark is nice- about like the Lord & Taylor on Fifth Avenue- but still, it's Belk's- doesn't bring the most upscale image in the minds of Southern mall rats.

I am such a redneck, I actually think Belk's is pretty nice. Maybe it would help if they called it something like "La Place du Belk."

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Posted

Thinking again, this situation could be worse- it could be JC Penney or Beall's or, even worse, Beall's Outlet, buying Parisian.

I thought Proffitt's coming to Greenville Mall a few years ago, replacing Parisian, was horrid, too.

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Posted

Umm, Parisian is an upscale store. It actually up there with Nordstrom.

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Posted

I invite all the Belk naysayers to Charlotte to shop at Belk SouthPark. I don't think Phipps will be lowered in status by Belk if they do come if they merchandise it like the SouthPark store.

Anyway, I figure Barneys will get that Parisian space...

Steven, that is exactly the problem with Belk and it's image. One has to go to a particular store in order to be swayed. You would never hear someone say "you should come visit the Boca Raton Neiman. They stock great merchandise at that store." For every "moderate end" Belk, there are several....ummmm...regular Belks. I think in Georgia what hurt Belk's image is that there are those that are in plazas throughout small town Georgia as well. I have not been to the Belk's at Mall of Georgia but the nicest one I have ever been to was at the Georgia Square Mall in Athens. (That was when I was in college so things may have changed :whistling: )It was nice but that is not nice enough for Georgia's premier mall.

Let me make this point....I have no problem with Belk. I don't shop at one enough to even have an opinion. I would have the same issue with Dillards or JCPenny trying to locate at Phipps. Where is a Belk close by anyway...oh yeah, the Mall of Georgia, Canton and the one in Cumming. Anyway, I'm sure it's a nice store and as I have said earlier, I would not have a problem with one being at some of Atlanta's many malls....just not it's premier shopping location.

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Posted

Belk really ought to consider having a separate nameplate for its most upscale stores. Different Belk stores used to have different names (e.g., Belk-Simpson) and there have also been Belk-owned stores with completely different names (e.g., Tag's, The Leader, various cheap-end bargain basement stores, etc.).

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Posted

Steven, that is exactly the problem with Belk and it's image. One has to go to a particular store in order to be swayed. You would never hear someone say "you should come visit the Boca Raton Neiman. They stock great merchandise at that store." For every "moderate end" Belk, there are several....ummmm...regular Belks. I think in Georgia what hurt Belk's image is that there are those that are in plazas throughout small town Georgia as well. I have not been to the Belk's at Mall of Georgia but the nicest one I have ever been to was at the Georgia Square Mall in Athens. (That was when I was in college so things may have changed :whistling: )It was nice but that is not nice enough for Georgia's premier mall.

Let me make this point....I have no problem with Belk. I don't shop at one enough to even have an opinion. I would have the same issue with Dillards or JCPenny trying to locate at Phipps. Where is a Belk close by anyway...oh yeah, the Mall of Georgia, Canton and the one in Cumming. Anyway, I'm sure it's a nice store and as I have said earlier, I would not have a problem with one being at some of Atlanta's many malls....just not it's premier shopping location.

Actually Belk is the anchor store at the Forum in Peachtree Corners. Which is a very affluent suburb and considered to be a very nice shopping center.

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Posted

Actually Belk is the anchor store at the Forum in Peachtree Corners. Which is a very affluent suburb and considered to be a very nice shopping center.

Not Atlanta's premier shopping destination.

Okay....is everyone reading what I am writing? I have no problem with Belks....it just does not belong in Atlanta's premier destination. Peachtree City is affluent....as are many areas of Atlanta...it is not however Atlanta's premier neighborhood either. Belk does not have the name recognition necessary for Phipps Plaza. That's just my opinion. I don't know any other way to explain that. I'm not against the store and as I said earlier....which people seem to be negating...for every one or two stores a person list where Belk may be up to a Macy's standard, there are several examples where it is not. All I have to do is go read in the SC forum.

That's all I have to say on the matter. Again, I'm sure Belk is a nice store. I'm sure there are many malls that would be more than happy to have one anchor it. I would hope, that with the current mall mix at Phipps and Lenox, Simon would not think this would be fitting. It's not a knock to Belk in any way. Perhaps if Belk is interested in a Buckhead location, they should try the shopping center across Peachtree Rd from Phipps Plaza. Belk could also scout in the soon to be redeveloped Disco Kroger location.

I'm sure before it's all said and done, someone will tell me that the Belk in Albany is great as well. I'm sure they all are in some form or another....just not at Atlanta's permier shopping destination.

Simon and company are you guys reading this? :shades:

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Posted

Lady C

Just remember, you're not alone on this on at all. They would have to change the name of their upscale stores and promote them differently as well. As is nothing with the name Belk

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Posted

Not Atlanta's premier shopping destination.

Okay....is everyone reading what I am writing? I have no problem with Belks....it just does not belong in Atlanta's premier destination. Peachtree City is affluent....as are many areas of Atlanta...it is not however Atlanta's premier neighborhood either. Belk does not have the name recognition necessary for Phipps Plaza. That's just my opinion. I don't know any other way to explain that. I'm not against the store and as I said earlier....which people seem to be negating...for every one or two stores a person list where Belk may be up to a Macy's standard, there are several examples where it is not. All I have to do is go read in the SC forum.

That's all I have to say on the matter. Again, I'm sure Belk is a nice store. I'm sure there are many malls that would be more than happy to have one anchor it. I would hope, that with the current mall mix at Phipps and Lenox, Simon would not think this would be fitting. It's not a knock to Belk in any way. Perhaps if Belk is interested in a Buckhead location, they should try the shopping center across Peachtree Rd from Phipps Plaza. Belk could also scout in the soon to be redeveloped Disco Kroger location.

I'm sure before it's all said and done, someone will tell me that the Belk in Albany is great as well. I'm sure they all are in some form or another....just not at Atlanta's permier shopping destination.

Simon and company are you guys reading this? :shades:

That wasnt what I was arguing. You were saying the closest you'll see a Belk's was the Mall of Georgia or Canton, and I was pointing around that you could find one in Peachtree Corners...not Peachtree city(Peachtree corners is on the otherside of town and much closer in than canton or buford). And yes there are some of Atlanta's nicest suburban neighborhoods nearby such as CCOS and to a lesser extent St. Ives, and many other neighborhoods with million dollar houses that dont have the same name recognition.

I'm not saying it belongs in Phipps, I frankly dont know. I'm just pointing out that it is closer to the city than you think and is in a very nice area.

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Posted

It is interesting how some malls have a great mix of stores from super upscale to downright rednecky!

I think in Dallas there is a mall or two that have both a JC Penneys or Sears along with a Neiman Marcus....How strange is that?

But Im totally with Lady C. on this too. Belk is fine in its place but not at Atlantas finest shopping destination.

Hell even in Augusta Georgia when i was in high school Belk was kind of looked down upon as the least favorable department stores in town, (other than Sears and JC Penneys and places like that.)

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Posted

It is interesting how some malls have a great mix of stores from super upscale to downright rednecky!

I think in Dallas there is a mall or two that have both a JC Penneys or Sears along with a Neiman Marcus....How strange is that?

But Im totally with Lady C. on this too. Belk is fine in its place but not at Atlantas finest shopping destination.

Hell even in Augusta Georgia when i was in high school Belk was kind of looked down upon as the least favorable department stores in town, (other than Sears and JC Penneys and places like that.)

There is one in Honolulu that has a Neiman Marcus, Prada, Burberry, Louis Vuitton...plus a Sears and a cheesy drugstore straight from the 1960s. Still, it is a huge mall and having a Sears hidden away doesn't really affect it that much. Phipps is different, being a smaller mall with the Parisian sign pretty visible.

Does anyone here have familiarity with mall anchor leases from the early '90s? Would an acquiror of Parisian probably automatically have the right to step into Parisian's lease, or would there be a clause prohibiting assignment of the space to another company?

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Posted

Steven, that is exactly the problem with Belk and it's image. One has to go to a particular store in order to be swayed. You would never hear someone say "you should come visit the Boca Raton Neiman. They stock great merchandise at that store." For every "moderate end" Belk, there are several....ummmm...regular Belks. I think in Georgia what hurt Belk's image is that there are those that are in plazas throughout small town Georgia as well. I have not been to the Belk's at Mall of Georgia but the nicest one I have ever been to was at the Georgia Square Mall in Athens. (That was when I was in college so things may have changed :whistling: )It was nice but that is not nice enough for Georgia's premier mall.

Let me make this point....I have no problem with Belk. I don't shop at one enough to even have an opinion. I would have the same issue with Dillards or JCPenny trying to locate at Phipps. Where is a Belk close by anyway...oh yeah, the Mall of Georgia, Canton and the one in Cumming. Anyway, I'm sure it's a nice store and as I have said earlier, I would not have a problem with one being at some of Atlanta's many malls....just not it's premier shopping location.

I understand what you're saying, Lady Celeste. Phipps Plaza doesn't need Belk. And Belk hasn't done the best job with its smaller stores. But unfortunately, when it comes to mall department store anchors, the pool is very, very shallow these days. The list of potential suitors for that site is small and unfortunatly, outside of Von Maur, Barneys New York or a duplicate of what's already in Buckhead, the alternatives are worse than Belk would be. They could cut Parisian up into smaller stores I guess, but that's about it.

Belk really ought to consider having a separate nameplate for its most upscale stores. Different Belk stores used to have different names (e.g., Belk-Simpson) and there have also been Belk-owned stores with completely different names (e.g., Tag's, The Leader, various cheap-end bargain basement stores, etc.).
I don't like that idea at all. If the store stood for something totally different, it would be cool, but a few merchandise line tweaks doesn't justify a seperate nameplate if it didn't exist in the first place.

It is interesting how some malls have a great mix of stores from super upscale to downright rednecky!

I think in Dallas there is a mall or two that have both a JC Penneys or Sears along with a Neiman Marcus....How strange is that?

The wide variety mix is the one that works in the long run for regional malls. Small malls can get by marketing to one market segment, but big malls need enough diversity to keep the crowds coming. Narrowly-focused regionals are the ones falling off at the largest rate in mall-land.

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Posted

I understand what you're saying, Lady Celeste. Phipps Plaza doesn't need Belk. And Belk hasn't done the best job with its smaller stores. But unfortunately, when it comes to mall department store anchors, the pool is very, very shallow these days. The list of potential suitors for that site is small and unfortunatly, outside of Von Maur, Barneys New York or a duplicate of what's already in Buckhead, the alternatives are worse than Belk would be. They could cut Parisian up into smaller stores I guess, but that's about it.

I don't like that idea at all. If the store stood for something totally different, it would be cool, but a few merchandise line tweaks doesn't justify a seperate nameplate if it didn't exist in the first place.

The wide variety mix is the one that works in the long run for regional malls. Small malls can get by marketing to one market segment, but big malls need enough diversity to keep the crowds coming. Narrowly-focused regionals are the ones falling off at the largest rate in mall-land.

Great points.

I always wondered why those two malls were across the street from each other. Just seems kind of odd to me.

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Posted

I always wondered why those two malls were across the street from each other. Just seems kind of odd to me.

Because they've traditionally been very different types of malls. Although Phipps has seen a decline hear and there over the years, it was designed to be primarily a luxury shopping destination. I think the original owners called it a "Mini 5th Avenue" or something similar. The two malls drive traffic to one another. When Simon bought both malls, they more or less created one big mall from the pair.

Honestly, Belk has maintained that they were only interested in some of the Parisian stores. I don't think Phipps was one of those stores. I do not know if Belk actually got the bid. Former CEO George Jones was/is also interested. However, he wants the entire chain unlike Belk. If he and Saks came to an agreement, he more than likely got the bid. Since Saks has announced more Parisian store openings after they announced they had a buyer, I suspect it wasn't Belk who got the bid. I could be wrong, but it doesn't make sense to continue with store openings that will no longer have a use. Either way, I see Parisian giving up that space in the future. :(

While the SP Belk is nice, it's not the best shopping experience I've ever had. The store is outfitted pretty badly. It's cluttered with merchandise sitting too close together and the sales associates are less than knowledgeable. The merchandise itself is nice, but the experience does need to be improved. Honestly, I choose Nordstrom or one of the brand specific stores over Belk about 99% of the time. I do try to supprt Belk because it is local, but it's difficult.

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Posted (edited)

When I defend Belk SouthPark, it's not because it's an ideal store. In fact, it's far from it. But it is an example of a higher level of merchandising than Belk is typically known for.

Really, the store hasn't been right since Belk centralized its leadership with the other stores. When there was still a Belk Brothers group based in Charlotte with its own buyers, the merchandise was better laid out, less vendor-driven and overall a lot better brand-wise. The new organization has landed a lot of designer names, but it's very hard to keep them without the proper promotion, and the Belk orgaization overall is doing a bad job with this.

What we're forgetting though when we're lashing out at Belk is that its competiton isn't doing a hell of a lot better with consistency either. I have been in some positively awful Macy's stores, as well as Dillard's, May Company, Lord & Taylor, and yes, even Saks, Neiman's and Nordstrom. Most chains, if they're large enough, have a hirearchy of locations and if we focused on the bad stores without giving the better stores some credit, we'd be doing these respcetive chains a dis-service.

Edited by StevenRocks

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Posted

Maybe Belk will be taking the low-end Parisian stores in small malls in small towns, and another bidder taking the better Parisians in larger cities?

I get the sense that Parisian started out as Alabama's version of Belk's, although nicer, with stores in small towns such as Dothan, AL, but then since the early '90s Parisian has expanded to places like Phipps Plaza, Indianapolis, metro Detroit, etc.- larger cities that would have larger and more upscale stores. Thus it seems like Parisian could be sort of a split personality chain- some stores are OK but in small towns, and other stores are upscale and in larger cities. The chain could be broken in 2, I'd think.

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