Malls on Guam are attracting new business and new offerings that are showing faith in retail opportunities.

For the first time since the Guam Premier Outlets opened in October 1997 it is at 100% occupancy.

At the beginning of October two spaces remained unoccupied at GPO. Play N Trade which opened in October filled one space. Leila’s Lingerie will fill the last space. A Guess store will occupy the space currently filled by Designer Zone.

Play N Trade opened Oct.15 and specializes in video games and video game accessories. Jeff C. Hsiao storeowner said “Play N Trade occupies 2 000 square feet and about $50 000 has been invested into getting the store ready. We buy sell and trade video games and video game accessories for the computer and all of the video game systems. We are also offering our customers free membership cards. Customers have until Oct. 22 to come and sign up for free membership cards which makes them eligible to receive a 15%-discount on games game accessories and t-shirts and caps depicting different video game characters.”

Leila’s Lingerie is set to open Nov. 25 and will fill a space of 1 000 square feet. Sanjay Dewan storeowner said “We noticed that there are no lingerie boutiques like Frederick’s of Hollywood or Victoria’s Secret on Guam for women to shop in. Women have to go to the lingerie sections of department stores to shop for lingerie. What we wanted to do was create a one-stop-shopping lingerie boutique for women planning an intimate evening.” The store will sell several different categories of lingerie from both European and American designed lines. Customers will be able to purchase daily wear lingerie more intimate lingerie and also loungewear of shorts and pajamas. In addition to lingerie and lounge wear customers will also be able to purchase other items such as massage and bath oils.

The Guess store is scheduled to open April 1 2006 at the latest. “We will sell the complete line of apparel for men ladies kids as well as jewelry perfumes handbags watches wallets and eyewear. We will also feature off-price goods at discounted prices. We are also planning on bringing in the Guess shoe line to Guam ” Jessica Ignacio-Mesa brand manager of Guess told the Journal. More than $200 000 has been invested into the 3 017 square-foot space to get the store ready.

At the Agana Shopping Center customers will soon be able to shop at the island’s first And 1 store and catch a movie afterwards.

Randy Obispo one of the owners of And 1 said “The targeted opening date is Nov. 12. The store will be 1 200 square feet and will specialize in street basketball footwear and accessories. We noticed that street ball is very popular on Guam and thought that an And 1 store would do well.” The store will be located on the second floor of the Agana Shopping Center across from Gamestop.

As first reported in the Journal (See “Spider man awaits” in the June 14 2004 issue of the Journal.) the Agana Shopping Center Theaters will have five auditoriums. The biggest of the five theaters The Flagship Theater will be about 10% bigger than the biggest theater at the Micronesia Mall. It will hold about 300 people and its screen will be about 16 feet wide and 38 feet long. The other four theaters will have a maximum capacity of about 190 people each. All five theaters will be equipped with Dolby Digital Surround Sound and wider seats with thicker cushions and higher backs. Shelly Gibson director of marketing group sales and promotions for Tan Holdings Corp.’s Tango Inc. which does business as Micronesia Mall Theatres told the Journal “Everything that our customers have come to expect at our Micronesia Mall theaters will be found at the Agana Shopping Center theaters. With this new location we hope to breed a different type of moviegoer: a moviegoer who doesn’t wait until the weekend to watch movies but one who goes during the weekdays because it is now more convenient.” The theaters are scheduled for a mid-2006 opening. In order to accommodate the new theaters the Agana Shopping Center will have to reinforce the floor and raise the roof.

People passing the Acanta Mall in Tumon will notice ongoing renovations in preparation for new stores as well as to make the front of the mall more exciting. Acanta Mall will welcome two new stores to its lineup: Pietro’s and Pacific Café coffee shop.

Pietro’s is an Italian restaurant set to open by the first week of December. Tomotaka Fujisaki owner of Pietro’s said “This will be the first Pietro’s on island but it is a popular restaurant with 110 locations in Japan five in South Korea five in China and one on Hawaii.” The restaurant will occupy 1 900 to 2 000 square feet. The average price of an entrée ranges from $9 to $12 with more expensive dishes costing $14 or more.

The vintage clothing store Bambino also located at the Acanta Mall opened Sept. 5. Tetsuro Masuda owner of Bambino told the Journal “I wanted to open up a business that was unique to Guam. That is why I decided on a vintage clothing store. Bambino is the only vintage clothing store on Guam. We sell vintage clothing and accessories from the 1950’s through the 1970s as well as popular modern brand names like Abercrombie & Fitch and American Eagle. The store occupies 670 square feet and $30 000 to $40 000 has been invested into it.”

Once the two new stores open up all the spaces at the Acanta Mall will be filled. Joe John Mantanona business development and leasing manager for Acanta Mall attributes this to “Focusing on the local economy and market and finding common mixes of experiences that the visitors will appreciate and enjoy.”

Three new stores are also set to open up soon at the Micronesia Mall ComPacific Guess Kids and Benetton 0-12. ComPacific a computer store should open by Nov. 11. Manoucher Sabeti storeowner said “The store will be 1 000 square feet and about $50 000 to $60 000 has already been invested into the store not including the inventory.” This will be the third ComPacific to open on Guam. The first ComPacific opened July 2004 and is the biggest store consisting of 2 500 square feet. ComPacific at the Agana Shopping center opened in April and is the smallest of the three stores on Guam at 500 square feet. There are also ComPacific stores on the islands of Yap and Chuuk.

Benetton 0-12 is a clothing store that specializes in infant to junior sizes. Wendy H. Ortiz general manager for Benetton 0-12 said “The store is scheduled to open around late January to early February and will be 800 square feet. This will be the first Benetton 0-12 to open on Guam.” Right now the Benetton children’s clothing line is being sold at the United Colors of Benetton store. Once Benetton 0-12 opens United Colors of Benetton will phase out children’s clothing and concentrate only on men and women’s clothing and accessories.

Guess Kids is scheduled to open around March 2006. Ignacio-Mesa said “It will be 817 square feet and it will cost somewhere around $100 00 to construct the store and provide fixtures.” The Guess store for adults at the mall opened Oct. 15 (See “Focus ” on Page 22.). The Guess store occupies 1 800 square feet and in excess of $200 000 has been invested in it.

In addition to the new stores phase 1 of the Micronesia Mall will be renovated to match phase II of the mall which opened August 1998. Phillip Schrage general manager of the mall said “Over 50 000 square foot of quarry tile was removed from center court and other common areas and replaced with a high grade quartz tile. The ceiling and lighting treatments in Concourses I and II were also redesigned to match the ceilings and lighting in Phase II. In addition both phases of the exterior of Micronesia Mall were repainted as part of the renovation project.” The renovation is scheduled to be finished before Thanksgiving in time for the holiday shopping season. MBJ