Friday, August 9, 2019

[CLOSURE ALERT] Vilebrequin Off The Deep End and Out of Business at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta

Just days after The Shops Buckhead Atlanta's new owner Jamestown hosted a "Town Hall" meeting to get feedback on ways to improve the project, yet another retailer has closed.  This time it's luxury swimwear company Vilebrequin that threw in the towel.  Sources close to the project indicate that the boutique closed last week without any warning to staff or customers.  By Thursday afternoon, the store was completely empty without any fixtures or signage indicating what just days ago it had been.

Vilebrequin, which sold men's, women's and children's swimwear, never made much sense in the project as its goods are available via plenty of department stores such as Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue, but also often at discount stores like T.J. Maxx and Marshalls.  Additionally, the brand was in what it offers: only swimwear.  

The Geneva, Switzerland-based company is owned by New York-based GIII Apparel Group Ltd., also owner of Cole Haan, Kenneth Cole and Vince Camuto, among other brands.  Vilebrequin was the only brand the company operated at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta.  

The closure of Vilebrequin is at least the seventh retail closure in the project.  Previous closures include Scoop, Denim & Soul, Kit & Ace, Bella Bag, Helmut Lang

Jonathan Adler  Five restaurants have also closed, although Le Colonial, a French-Vietnamese restaurant from New York, will open next week in the former Dolce Italian restaurantBiltong Bar also opened this past November in the former American F+B restaurant space.

In advance of Vilebrequin's closure, men's apparel retailer Robert Talbott closed quietly earlier this year, while Tom Ford is expected to close in the coming months ahead of its planned move to Phipps Plaza.

When Jamestown purchased what was then the former City Hall East in 2011, it got a huge empty canvas with which it could create Ponce City Market.  At The Shops Buckhead Atlanta however, the firm has acquired a project already built, occupied and identified, meaning that making significant changes will be more challenging. 

That said, the closures of Vilebrequin, Robert Talbott, and Tom Ford, etc., could benefit the developer as it looks to reconfigure certain aspects of the project to better meet the needs and expectations of would-be patrons and the neighborhood.

Jamestown definitely has their work cut out for them.  

Simon Property Group, the largest mall operator in the country, has multiple active projects at both Lenox Square and Phipps Plaza.  Lenox, which recently celebrated its 60th anniversary, will soon add flagship stores of Apple and Zara, as well as the first Atlanta area location of Capital One CafĂ©.  Phipps Plaza is also in the midst of a significant redevelopment that will see the addition of a 150 room Nobu Hotel, 10,000 square foot Nobu restaurant, Pinstripes bowling and restaurant venue, Life Time Athletic's "Diamond Club," and 300,000 square feet of Class A office space.

What retailer or restaurant do you think has the least likelihood or remaining in business at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta?  What could Jamestown do to make The Shops Buckhead Atlanta more appealing?  What, for you, is the biggest reason you don't often shop at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta?  

Please share your thoughts below  


Anonymous said...

I say let's replace with a Chick Fil A. Just joking! Perhaps they should think of adding something that has food for medium price fare, or a juicing spot like Kale Me Crazy? Let's be real--how many people here in ATL shopped there for luxury swimtrunks anyway?

Anonymous said...

Atlantans do not support high-end retail. Wal-Mart, TJ Maxx, and H&M thrive here.

Anonymous said...

As I suspected, the market for $300 swim trunks, which nobody cares if you are wearing and would actually make fun of you for, is not very deep in Atlanta.

Anonymous said...

Who has any money to spend anymore when Trump and the Republican 1 percenter traitors are destroying the middle class and the 99%??

Elwood said...

The history of the founding of the store is interesting as per Travel + Leisure but $300.00 swim trunks. Not enough of a market for such pricey swim wear. I headed to Marshall's.

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