Following the success at intu Lakeside, Upside Down House UK have entered into an exclusive partnership to create the experience at six more intu centres including intu Trafford Centre, intu Metrocentre and intu Braehead. Each inverted two-storey house will feature a number of upside-down rooms with unique interior and exterior designs to reflect the local surroundings.
Rutland County Council have given the green light for a former NatWest branch in Oakham to be transformed into a deli/restaurant. The Natwest branch at 44 High Street, which dates back to the early 18th century and is grade II-listed, closed in 2017 but is now set to become Rutland Otters Smokehouse and Deli.
Taylor St Baristas, the family founded coffee shop chain, has appointed administrators as part of its restructuring plans. Despite having sold eight of its cafés, as well as a licence to operate under the Taylor St brand, to Black Sheep Coffee the directors decided that the business is no longer sustainable. It is understood the Taylor St Barista cafés, including those licensed to Black Sheep will continue to trade, as well as the coffee continuing to be sourced and roasted by the company and new baristas trained.
This week has seen the first Crussh Fit Food and Juice Bar open outside the South East. In partnership with Sodexo, the new healthy food and juice chain’s café has opened in Birmingham’s Children’s Hospital offering a large range of healthy food from breakfast pots and toasties to salads and wraps, healthy treats, freshly pressed juices, smoothies and organic and Fairtrade coffee.
US teledentistry brand SmileDirectClub have announced plans to open nine UK SmileShops including four that will be in partnership with Well Pharmacy. The first outlets will be in London’s Hammersmith, Oxford Circus, Tower Bridge and Crossway in Birmingham and the Well Pharmacy pilots will be within their Cambridge, Newcastle, Cardiff and Leeds stores.
With the continued drive to reduce single-use plastics three major supermarket chains have announced new initiatives: Tesco is to stop using plastic carrier bags to deliver its groceries using reusable green trays instead; Iceland is piloting a programme in London to entirely remove plastic bags and replace them with “extra-strong paper bags” and Asda have transformed 90,000 plastic water bottles into tarmac to resurface its Wakefield car park that would have otherwise gone to landfill or incineration.
Southampton’s Westquay is to see a handful of new openings including luxury lifestyle brand The White Company that will open a 6,500 sq ft store in time for the Christmas period. Hammerson have also signed Tommy Hilfiger, Type and the escape room concept Locked in a Room as they continue to ‘actively rotate our retailer mix’.
FI Real Estate Management have agreed a number of property deals for former Toys R Us properties across the country. Five sites totalling 199,000 sq ft, in Doncaster, Swindon, Coventry, Oxford and Peterborough, have been sold for a total consideration of £26m to a mix of retailers and local authorities. Leases on another 200,000 sq ft of sites in London, Solihull, Leeds, Glasgow, Nottingham, Sheffield and Poole have been agreed with a number of retailers including: B&M Bargains; Lidl; Smyths Toys and The Range.
Planning for a £100m leisure, sport and food development on Newcastle Quayside, that will feature a 460ft observation wheel dubbed The Whey Aye, has been granted. The Giants on the Quayside development will cover 344,445 sq ft that was formerly a flour mill site on the banks of the River Tyne. The Whey Aye, measuring 16 ft taller than the London Eye will be joined by a food and beverage destination called The Giant’s Quay, a family entertainment centre, giant sport deck and state-of-the-art virtual golf club. Developer World Wheel Company Newcastle expects construction to start early next year and open to the public in 2023.
Icon Outlet has seen five new retail brands and three new restaurants open at the London’s O2 outlet centre. Nike has launched a 13,500 sq ft store; adidas a 7,300 sq ft shop next door; outdoor and leisure brands Regatta and Craghoppers are sharing a 3,450 sq ft unit; Beauty Outlet has a 2,150 sq ft store; By Chloe, the vegan casual dining concept will occupy a 5,400 sq ft restaurant, featuring a 1,500 sq ft back garden area; Dublin-based fish concept Hook will be in a 1,900 sq ft site next to the O2’s trampoline park and Indian street food restaurant Scarlet has occupied a 1,200 sq ft space in the arena.