Some exciting news on the fashion retail front! Last week as I was in New York I learned that both Uniqlo (from Japan) and TopShop (from UK) are definitely planning on moving out to LA sometime in the near future. Possibly as early as next year in 2012. I spoke to the manager of each store (both are in SoHo) to confirm the status of their expansion plans.
At Uniqlo, I was told that corporate has informed store associates that they “must be willing to travel out to California by next year (2012).” Possibly to help train new employees and open new stores. However, the store manager wasn’t absolutely sure whether it would be LA or SF that would get Uniqlo first, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Union Square got it first only because it’s the main shopping hub in SF. It’s a little harder in LA to determine where to open up first as it is too fragmented. And that’s exactly why I hope Downtown LA becomes our main shopping hub for LA someday, reducing the confusion on where the “center” of the region actually is.
Anyway, TopShop also told me that “LA isn’t far” from their expansion plans. The manager told me that Las Vegas would be first to open on the West Coast in 2012 at The Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace. And that LA and Miami would be the next ones afterward.
These two popular, “fast fashion” clothing stores have been exclusively in New York for awhile now (Uniqlo opened in New York in 2006 and TopShop in 2009, both in SoHo) and TopShop barely opened their second location in Chicago last week. They will be exciting additions to LA when they do eventually open here and I really do hope that Downtown LA will also be on their radar screens. In fact, wouldn’t it be amazing if they decided to open at the newly remodeled FIGat7th? That would really put Downtown LA on the fashion map.