By Natalie Dolce, Published in GlobeStreet
GlobeSt.com caught up with retail expert Anne Mastin, EVP of retail real estate at Steiner + Associates at the 2017 RECon, to talk about how retail is no longer about just filling a box and what she thinks the future will look like.
“The future is the careful curation of space. It can no longer just be about filling a box.”
So said Mastin, that Steiner has always focused on finding the right retailer, restaurant or entertainment user for each space within our projects. “It’s much more difficult and it takes tremendous creativity and patience.”
But when executed well, she says, the dividends are tremendous. “This also applies to redeveloping or refreshing existing projects,” she adds.
For example, she says that the firm is undergoing a significant refresh at one of its projects called Easton right now that includes the addition/relocation of more than 40 tenants in an already high-performing center. “These upgrades are critical to the long-term success and sustainability of even the best projects.”
As for trends she is seeing in the retail market, she says that food and entertainment have always been important components to Steiner projects. She also notes that at Easton, the firm’s revenue from its restaurants exceeds $100 million annually.
“We see these uses continuing to grow in both their numbers and percentage of GLA in all projects,” she says. “We are also seeing many soft good retailers working very hard to get better at merchandising. Understanding that they have to compete with the convenience of online shopping they are putting significantly more emphasis on the in-store experience.”