Westfield to Claim ‘Largest Shopping Centre in Europe’ Title
It’s not all doom and gloom for the UK retail sector as Westfield London continues to invest and expand its retail, restaurant and leisure facilities.
This week (20th March 2018) Westfield London launched the first phase opening of its £600m expansion, 6-months ahead of schedule. The expansion will house new store openings including John Lewis, Adidas, H&M, West Elm, Currys PC World, Boots, Space NK, Mango and The White Company.
The phased opening of the 740,000 sq ft expansion will see more than 90 new shops, cafes, restaurants and leisure outlets open throughout 2018 taking Westfield London to 2.6m sq ft, making it the largest shopping centre Europe.
An anchor feature of the expansion is a new state of the art John Lewis full-line department store over 4-levels and 230,000 sq ft. John Lewis has been the most sought after retailer in Westfield London shopper surveys since opening the centre in 2008.
New fashion retailers joining the expansion include Primark, which is opening a 70,000 sq ft store, Chinese brand Urban Revivo opening its first store outside Asia along with Boden, Bravissimo, Stradivarius, Frencheye, Emperor and Charles Tyrwhitt.
As well as strengthening its homewares offer with West Elm, Bo Concept, DFS and Raft, Westfield London will also be adding to its health and beauty proposition with Space.NK, Urban Decay, a new Boots, expanded Lush and new stores from Molton Brown, Miller Harris, Penhaligons and Blink Brow Bar. A brand new fitness concept, FirstLight Cycle will also open and will become the UK’s largest boutique cycling offering.
Following their success at Westfield London, H&M, The White Company, Monsoon, Mango, Guess, UGG, Cath Kidston, Pull & Bear and Bershka will be launching bigger and enhanced stores within the expansion.
A new dedicated outdoor events space, Westfield Square, which is one of the focal points of the expansion, will provide a major focus on dining, entertainment and experience and will go live in Summer 2018. Operators such as Europe’s largest Japanese food hall Ichiba, All Star Lanes, Puttshack (the world’s first super tech indoor mini-golf experience) and new restaurant and bar concept, Maple, will add to the vibrancy of Westfield Square when they open throughout 2018.
Westfield Square is adjacent to the red brick Dimco Building which was built in 1899 and once was the engine and boiler houses of the Wood Lane generating station which supplied energy for the Central London Railways and more recently acted as a layover for buses. Westfield now proposes to convert this building into a vibrant venue to host events and entertainment, such as Burberry’s recent London Fashion Week event.
The additional flagship stores and restaurants will bring the total number to 450 outlets upon completion.
Peter Miller, COO of Westfield Europe said following the successful opening in 2008, Westfield has been master planning this expansion to connect with and stimulate the broader White City regeneration.
“The further investment ahead of the centre’s 10th anniversary year, is testimony to the strength of Westfield London which experiences high retail demand for space from luxury and high street brands looking to house their flagship stores, along with first to market dining and leisure concepts.
“Westfield London has introduced a number of UK centre firsts including the first luxury precinct, new hotel concierge services, an expanded dining offer as well as hosting major international events and film premieres. It is now time to build on that success with the opening of the expansion.”
Paula Nickolds, Managing Director, John Lewis added,
“We’re thrilled to be the anchor shop in the extension of this world leading shopping and leisure destination.
“Our 50th shop demonstrates our latest thinking and we will offer customers something quite different. It’s also where we can build a far more personal relationship with our customers – bringing together the very best of our service with our outstanding Partners.”
Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham Council, commented:
“We’re particularly pleased to have Westfield London working with us to build economic growth that works for all our residents. In this latest phase, we have negotiated new social housing, new jobs and new infrastructure that will benefit our residents.
“We’ve also made sure H&F residents have first choice on the 8,000 jobs up for grabs in the Westfield expansion and negotiated a raft of improvements for White City, including a £3.9million investment in Shepherds Bush Overground station, 578 new cycle parking spaces and a new southern station entrance at Wood Lane. Our borough is fortunate to have all that Westfield brings and this latest development is a really exciting addition to our borough.”