The Retail Room was born out of de Winter – which has been operating and succeeding in the beautiful North West city of Chester for 26 years.
It’s been about that long that plans for the Northgate Development, which looked to reconfigure and regenerate retail in the city, have been on the table.
Legal tussles, action group objections and the recession all had their part to play in not making it a reality and quietly in the background our client the Grosvenor Shopping Centre has been reimagined and added to – making it very much the central hub for shopping in Chester.
This week however, there was a very exciting announcement that finally the anchor store for the multi-million pound development had been announced.
House of Fraser, the UK and Ireland’s premium department store group, will take the top post at the new 500,000 sq ft retail and leisure complex much to the delight of city stakeholders, retailers and residents.
The redevelopment will add 70 stores, cafes and restaurants, as well as 70 homes, hotel and conference centre, six-screen cinema and the city’s largest car park.
It will offer a full suite of experiences to locals and Chester’s millions of yearly visitors and will drive more visitors and shoppers into Chester.
Construction of the development will commence in late 2018, targeting an opening of all three phases by 2021.
The new department store, with approx. 100,000 sq ft of retail space over three floors, will offer customers a premium shopping environment and bring desirable brands and fashion labels to the region.
The store is designed to a high specification to accommodate a multi-channel, modern experience-led retail offering through elements of the build such as a large health and beauty department, which is twice the size of traditional beauty departments, and a premium rooftop restaurant with views over Chester’s historic racecourse.
Chester Northgate will be House of Fraser’s second major UK store opening, following Rushden Lakes, which opens this year, since its acquisition by Sanpower Group in late 2014.
In recent years, House of Fraser has focused on further developing its multichannel proposition, alongside continued investment in its store portfolio and international expansion, celebrating the opening of the company’s first store in China, Nanjing in December 2016.
Frank Slevin, Executive Chairman of House of Fraser, said: “We are very pleased to announce that we have signed an agreement to open an anchor store at Chester Northgate. Chester is an exciting location for us, being at the centre of a thriving regional economy. With its modern design, Chester Northgate will rejuvenate Chester city centre attracting more visitors and creating a dynamic retail environment.
“The new store clearly cements our commitment to and vision for the future growth of House of Fraser. The growth of our store portfolio and the further development of House of Fraser’s multichannel offer provides solid foundations for the ongoing transformation of the business, ultimately driving a great customer experience. I look forward to the store opening in 2021.”
Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWAC) are spearheading the regeneration of the city centre and the Chester Northgate project as a whole, assisted by development manager, Rivington Land.
Councillor Stuart Parker, Shadow Cabinet Member for Communities and Wellbeing for Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “House of Fraser is an optimal partner to complement the Northgate Chester redevelopment in lifting the city into the top 50 shopping destinations in the country.”