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Bal Harbour Shops January Sales Rise 15 percent Luxury Retailer Ends 2012 on Record High Note

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© Marketwire 2013
2013-02-28 16:06:23 -

BAL HARBOUR, FL--(Marketwire - February 28, 2013) -  The luxury retail market is booming worldwide with increased sales being reflected at Bal Harbour Shops.
January sales per square foot increased 15 percent to $2,793, year over year. For the year ended 2012, sales per square foot hit a record high of $2,729.60, more than six times the national average.
Bal Harbour Shops has been a leader in the retail industry since it opened in 1965. Sales per square foot have increased every year since inception except for 2001 after the 9-11 attacks and the economic downturn in 2009.
In 2012, Bal Harbour Shops topped the list as the most productive luxury shopping center in the world, according to data compiled by the International Council of Shopping Centers and published in Shopping Centers Today.
"In the past couple of years the percentage of international tourists shopping at Bal Harbour has grown to more than 70 percent," said Matthew Whitman Lazenby, operating partner and a third-generation family member involved in the business. "South American visitors have always been important for us. Based on the feedback from our retailers, Brazil and other South American markets are No. 1 in purchasing power, followed by Russia, Mexico and emerging Asian markets."
This broad international appeal has existing retailers clamoring for additional space with brands including Dolce & Gabbana, Tory Burch, Chanel, Prada, Brioni, Audemars Piguet and Loro Piana adding square footage. Other brands joining the Bal Harbour Shops retail mix include Swiss luxury jeweler de Grisogono, Etro and Lalique.
"My family and I have been hard at work on an expansion of the shopping center for many years. Our expansion plans will add 25 to 30 new stores in roughly 100,000 square feet, plus a third specialty department store, which will also be about 100,000 square feet," said Whitman Lazenby.
The secret to Bal Harbour Shops' success is its ability to remain flexible and to maintain a mix of retailers who can draw in new shoppers, while at the same time keep those who have been loyal to the brand. The ability to remain flexible can be attributed to the fact that the center is run by the Whitman family that listens to what both shoppers and tenants want from today's retail experience.
And, that success will only continue to grow as the Whitman family announced last month a partnership agreement with Swire Properties to jointly develop the 500,000-square-foot retail component of Miami's Brickell CityCentre.
"We see Brickell CityCentre to be a strategic fit enabling us to meet the increasing demand for high-end brands by shoppers from all over town and, indeed, from all over the world," Whitman Lazenby said.

Opened in 1965 by retail visionary Stanley Whitman, Bal Harbour Shops was the first all luxury fashion center featuring high-end retailers in a tropical, open-air setting. Bal Harbour Shops quickly became the most exclusive shopping destination in the country with record-setting sales and has remained the industry leader. In 2012, Bal Harbour Shops topped the list as the world's most productive luxury shopping center based on sales per square foot, according to data compiled by the International Council of Shopping Centers. Three generations of the Whitman family remain steadfast in their shared vision for this fashion mecca and its continued success.

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Susan R. Miller                                                               
Boardroom Communications Inc.            
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Cheryl Stephenson
Director of Marketing Bal Harbour Shops
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