A staple of the Chicago shopping scene, Water Tower Place has maintained a strong presence along the highly competitive Magnificent Mile, and with over 700,000 square feet of retail space, Water Tower Place does not slouch when it comes to size. Open since 1976, Water Tower Place has benefited from the steady stream of business that pours in from Michigan Avenue and accounts for the $1.9 billion that the Magnificent Mile generates in retail sales annually. Location clearly augments the ability for Water Tower to succeed. Its eight-level building serves a population of over 1.3 million people, averaging a household income of around $70,000. Stores within the mall include bebe, Hollister, the newly opened American Girl Place, Paiva and a host of others, but besides the abundance of retailers within the building, the site enjoys the business of the quarter of a million people working within a single-mile radius. Boasting the adjacent Hilton Suites Chicago, Foodlife and other dining outlets, and the Drury Lane Theater along Chestnut Street, Water Tower Place makes it possible to sleep, eat, shop and be entertained all within the same establishment, making it a likely shopping destination for years to come.
Opened more recently in 1991, Gurnee Mills puts its 1.8 million square feet to efficient use, making it one of the largest malls in the U.S., while maintaining a strong presence in the market. Though Gurnee Mills serves a slightly smaller trade area population than Water Tower Place at a little over a million people, the average household income is notably higher at around $95,000. Of course, as one of the largest malls in the nation, Gurnee Mills draws in a significantly larger amount of customers than the nearby population and boasts some 23 million shoppers each year. In addition to the mainstays of Club Libby Liu, H & M, Oakley and BCBGMAXAZRIA, Gurnee Mills helps to foster strong relationships with new leasers, as well. In helping to provide seasonal and full-year leases for carts dependent on entrepreneurial need, having an account manager to work closely with business owners, and scheduling a meeting with a Visual Merchandiser, Short-Term Leasing Representative or Mall Manager to help convey products more optimally, Gurnee Mills takes quite a few steps to ensure the success of businesses in its fold. As it continues to grow, those steps make all the difference.
Not to be outdone by its larger brethren, Stratford Square Mall has undergone a series of renovations to make it more attractive to customers and competitive in the overall market. Acquired by Feldman Mall Properties in 2005, Stratford Square Mall has moved toward adding “excitement” to the mall, the ingredient Larry Feldman felt would help raise the bar for shopping in Bloomingdale. This included a new, all-digital theater on the premises, replacing and upgrading lighting throughout the mall, plans to replace street signage for the mall and further plans to draw in unique sit-down restaurant offerings. For those with an exceptional idea to help enliven the Stratford Square Mall landscape, Feldman Mall Properties continues to reach out to make DuPage County a more enjoyable, exciting destination for Chicagoland shopping.