Lower Hutt's rebuilt Queensgate Mall announces new stores
A flood of new retailers are opening in Queensgate Mall, as the Lower Hutt shopping centre gets back up to full speed almost a year after the 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck.
Australian make-up giant Mecca Maxima and fashion retailer Seed Heritage, along with New Zealand outdoor clothing and equipment store Macpac will open later this year, just in time for Christmas.
The announcement comes after the mall managers Stride Property announced international fashion retailer H&M was opening in the mall on October 26.
The November 14 earthquake caused significant damage to the complex, resulting in part of the car park, as well as the cinema, being demolished. As a result, some stores closed, a handful of retailers moved out, and others were forced to reshuffle.
Stride Property general manager of shopping centres Roy Stansfield said the arrival of new retailers heralded a new era for the centre, which had undergone significant refurbishment following the quake.
"We're already looking forward to the much-anticipated arrival of clothing retailer H&M, so to have these new stores joining the centre in the coming months promises an exciting shopping experience for Queensgate customers in the lead up to Christmas."
In addition, footwear retailer Skechers, and new food outlet Fisherman's Plate, will also be setting up shop.
Existing Queensgate stores Amazon, Merchant and Decjuba will be re-opening soon, while Health 2000, Glassons and Hallensteins complete refurbishments.
A wide range of retailers have re-opened over the past few months, including Hannahs, Portmans, Boost Juice, Bed Bath N Table, and Bed Bath and Beyond.
All new, returning and refurbished stores were expected to open in time for the Christmas shopping period, Stansfield said.
"I'm very confident in say that by Christmas, we expect to have less than five stores unoccupied, and that's out of a total of approximately 160," he said.
"So, we will be up back at full speed, with the exception of the new cinema re-build portion."
The rebuild was in the design and planning phase, he said.
"We have got to work with the cinema operator, but essentially they want to replace what they had, but it's a bit early to say if there will be changing in the design.
"Probably within the next few months we'll be clear as to what it's going to look like."