Hay Street mall has put months of CBD retail lethargy behind it with three high-profile deals signalling the start of a city turnaround.
Lease Equity, Managing Director, Jim Tsagalis said the triple take-up, with more to follow, included an AFL Shop at 659 Hay Street, high-quality craft bag retailer Crumpler at 611 Hay Street and Austrian jeweller Swarovski at number 683 at the entry to the enex100 tower.
Each signed for spaces of 120sqm to 150sqm over the long-term, he said.
“That’s three very significant new deals that have happened in a market that’s been extremely difficult,” Mr Tsagalis said.
“It’s really good news for the city.”
In particular, he said the AFL’s decision to have a city presence to complement its suburban stores was likely to have been driven by the opening of Perth’s new football stadium at Burswood.
“A significant number of the 60,000 people that attend AFL at the stadium will visit the city — it’s one of the big changes to the city — the stadium will have an impact,” he said.
Mr Tsagalis, who acknowledged that some, including TopShop, had found city trading conditions tough, said the “green shoots” of retail regeneration were evident in the opening of H&M and that Uniqlo, which opened its first Australian store in Melbourne in April 2014, will shortly open its ninth Australian store in Hay Street mall as part of the redeveloped Plaza Arcade.
The international casual clothing retailer is expected to have a 2000sqm flagship Perth city store over two levels.
Mr Tsagalis reported a 40 per cent surge in leasing transactions in the Hay Street mall area in the past six months.