Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

shrek05

Tucson lands AZ's second LV, following Tiffany's and BCBG

13 posts in this topic

Louis Vuitton is on the way

Mexican shoppers help to attract upscale stores to La Encantada

By Levi J. Long

ARIZONA DAILY STAR

Tucson, Arizona {sodEmoji.{sodEmoji.|}} Published: 07.29.2006

advertisementIn a nod to upscale Tucson shoppers, the House of Vuitton will soon bring its French couture to the Old Pueblo.

Louis Vuitton, the Paris-based retailer and designer of upscale handbags, watches, luggage and other accessories, has signed an agreement with La Encantada shopping center to open a 3,000-square-foot store. It's expected to open by late September.

"It's a huge coup for Tucson. Louis Vuitton is one of the world's most renowned luxury brands around," said Kai Hsiao, senior manager at La Encantada, 2905 E. Skyline Drive, who announced the deal Friday.

Known for its line of leather goods and "LV" monogrammed purses, wallets and sunglasses, Louis Vuitton joins two other upscale retailers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I'll be there at the grand opening with my face pressed to the glass.

In all my talk of Tucsonans being such slobs I forgot about all of the rich Sonoran traffic we get here. Pretty soon, La Encatada's parking lot could be nothing but bullet-proof SUVs. And if Tucson ever gets another flight into Mexico, a lot of retailers will have to learn more Spanish.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yea, this is very exciting for Tucson. I remember after high school graduation and most of my friends went on to UofA, most complained about the malls in Tucson....or the lack there of. Whenever I went down there, it really had no retail. La Encantada is the first of its kinda down in Tucson. I hope I can get a chance to get down there for the opening...which are rather fun, exciting, and busy!

When LV reopened after is large expansion at Fashion Square, everything was flying off its shelves. The one wallet I wanted sold out in a matter of minutes! They had to limit the amount customers could buy because they were running out of stock.

Though the Tucson one will be significantly smaller, it will still be exciting. Its definitely a unique experience....goign to these grand openings.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

those are some pretty high end names for a midsize city.

It's to bad they aren't putting them downtown Tucson, that would seriously rock.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

those are some pretty high end names for a midsize city.

It's to bad they aren't putting them downtown Tucson, that would seriously rock.

The other day there was a front page column in the Tucson Citizen about bringing Nordstrom's to Downtown.

Totally speculative on the writer's part.

The "company line" in Tucson the last few years is that when we hit a million in population (which should happen in the next couple of years), all the big names in retail that haven't given Tucson a thought will put Tucson on their radar for new store locations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i don't hate la encantada, but it's yawn news to me. louis vuitton? is p.diddy gonna do the grand opening? we've gotten to where we just call the place 'la grunta' - just like the posh hunting resort on king of the hill, where you pays your money and the deer walk right up to the barrell of your gun. nothing like a brand chain that makes its money by convincing people to pay for their advertising - selling items with the logo all over them. can't wait!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

haha really? do people dislike la encantada? I havent been to tucson in over 10 years, so i have never been to this particular mall. seems like westcor is trying hard to make it into a scottsdale mall. where in tucson is this located? near catalina foothills?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

haha really? do people dislike la encantada? I havent been to tucson in over 10 years, so i have never been to this particular mall. seems like westcor is trying hard to make it into a scottsdale mall. where in tucson is this located? near catalina foothills?

no, i think that people who hate la grunta are definitely in the minority. i should have clarified: 'we' in my previous post is my girlfriend and me. i don't know anyone else who calls it 'la grunta' or hates the place, etc.

la encantada is very nice. it and every other outdoor upscale plaza mall built in the suburbs in the last 10 years is an attempt at mimicking the profitable blueprint of bayer properties' 'summit' located just outside birmingham, AL. the summit was built in 1997, and has become so successful as an 'outdoor lifestyle center' that bayer has trademarked the name and has summits opened or planned in reno, fort collins, CO, louisville, and leighigh valley, PA. they're also proposing a 1,000,000+ square foot retail center in slidell, LA, but i'm not sure if that one will be a 'summit' property - kinda oxymoronic in that area.

upscale-brand outdoor malls have existed for years in nice outdoorsy places like santa barbara, but those were actually, you know, part of the fabric of the downtown areas. properties like la encantada and the summit try to recreate that feel, but you have to drive out of town and park your car and get out and walk to feel like you're downtown somewhere.

la encantada opened in 2003 and is still adding upscale stores - LV, mac, tiffany, etc. yes, it's in the foothills at the intersection of sunrise drive and campbell avenue. it's the nicest of all the outdoor malls i've seen...but it's still a sprawl development. it's pleasant to be there, but like all sprawl developments, it's a land unto itself. mixed use is not in its vocabulary.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Ha, I've never heard the "La Grunta" comparison but it works in that both appeal to about the same clientele, I think. I always assumed that La Grunta was a lampoon on hunting camps in the Texas Hill Country, where there actually is an automatic deer feeder that brings the deer right to a certain spot, so all you have to do is wait.

There is a lot of apathy toward La Encatada, I think, possibly because it epitomizes all of the money coming into Tucson, the same money that's driven up housing costs so tremendously and made it so that not many people can afford to buy a home here (since wages have certainly not gone up).

But it also has to do with that perceived socio-economic divide along the Rillito. I know that not everyone in the Foothills is well-off, but there are many who think it as such.

La Encatada is certainly built on a successful model. I've seen it in other places, namely suburban Houston (in both First Colony and The Woodlands), Colorado Springs and San Antonio. I personally think it is better than a traditional mall since it uses less resources on lighting and air conditioning of the public spaces, and encourages people to walk a little bit more, since the stores are usually a little more spaced out than in traditional malls. But they've always seemed more like glorified outlet malls to me.

I guess it depends on who you are personally, but I've never found anything of interest at La Encatada, but then again I don't really patronize traditional malls either. Paying 4x the cost for a little extra stitching that brands an item has just never made sense to me, and that seems to be all that you can get up there. But maybe I'm daft in that respect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, so its similar to Phoenix's Biltmore Fashion Park and Scottsdale's Kierland, except both have a lotta character and are rather lively. Upscale, outdoor malls with upscale shops, restaurants, clubs, hang out joints, etc.

Im rather excited for Biltmore to finish their redevelopment. Much more walking-friendly. Opening up more spaces. Nice fountain/garden in the center of the mall area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lol - we're certainly the exception to the rule when it comes to affluence along sunrise drive. i think the apartment communities up there, cost-wise, do not fit into the affluent foothills landscape. the apartments are about $600-800 per month for a 1BR - certainly more than a lot of other places in tucson, but a hell of a lot cheaper than the nutzo mortgages people are paying for houses in the foothills. the result is that the apartments complexes up there are filled with types that most of the property owners in the area probably consider a little sketchy. my guess is it's a matter of time before renovations and outright sales / rezonings homogenize what's left of the 10 and 20 year-old apartment complexes up there. okay, off-topic....sorry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The other day there was a front page column in the Tucson Citizen about bringing Nordstrom's to Downtown.

Totally speculative on the writer's part.

Putting high-end retail into Downtown Tucson would mean a total shift and sanitization of Downtown. It's pretty grungy there at times, and a lot of people are terrified of it at night (I like it personally, but maybe that's just me). A lot of the bars and clubs would have to adapt or close, the tattoo and fetish shops would probably be run out and, most importantly, the people who spend their time there and give Downtown character would also be effectively run out. I mean, it's nice that we're having that more posh group of businesses around the Fox developing (i.e. - Enoteca, The Monkey Box, the new Cafe Milano, the always snobby Subway), but I probably wouldn't hang out on Congress Street at all if the whole corridor was like that.

I don't see any of that happening for quite a while. If any new retail of that nature comes into town, it's going to be in a more established upscale shopping area. Congress won't become like Seattle's Fifth Avenue anytime soon.

Ah, so its similar to Phoenix's Biltmore Fashion Park and Scottsdale's Kierland, except both have a lotta character and are rather lively. Upscale, outdoor malls with upscale shops, restaurants, clubs, hang out joints, etc.

I thought that Kierland was similar. You're right though, they are nice when you bring in some restaurants and clubs, and La Encatada is certainly missing that at this point. In fact, it's basically dead after about 8pm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, thats the main appeal of Kierland. The retail doesnt actually close until rather late (around 9 or so) and after that all the restaurants are bustling with people. Since its rather cool at night, and all the restaurants have outdoor seating (RA, North, Ocean Club, Cheesecake, PF Changs, Morton's) its really a lotta people just hanging around. Barnes and Nobles also gathers quite a crowd and Cold Stone keeps lotsa young people around til rather late.

Biltmore becomes more dead as the eateries and shops are rather separated, which makes it less appealing but I think they are changing that by adding a hotel, and the condo towers, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.