High street fashion chains River Island and Zara have both confirmed that they will be expanding their Intu Lakeside flagships this year, as part of the Essex shopping centre’s extensive refurbishment.

River Island will be doubling its current footprint to 21,000 square foot, while Zara is taking three times more space to create two new flagship stores at 35,000 square foot. The new expanded flagships will be among the largest in River Island’s and Zara’s portfolios.

Rebecca Ryman, regional managing director at Intu, commented: “Zara and River Island’s investment in bigger and better space is a huge vote of confidence for the exciting future of Intu Lakeside and this is mirrored by the number of fantastic brands also joining our line-up for the first time.”

A River Island spokesperson added: “River Island is excited to double the size of its current retail space at intu Lakeside. The combination of a loyal and high spending customer base, vibrant retail mix and the enhanced leisure offer make it the perfect location to be creating an even bigger store.”

They are the latest retailers to invest in flagship stores at intu Lakeside since H&M doubled the size of its store to 36,000 square foot and Next opened an expanded 70,000 square foot store in spring 2017. In total, Intu Lakeside’s occupiers spent 13 million pounds on new stores, refits and refurbishments last year.

The announcement comes ahead of a full shopping centre refurbishment programme this summer to enhance its existing entrances, lighting, seating and signs, as well as its 72 million pound 75,000 square foot expansion development for incoming leisure brands including Nickelodeon, Hollywood Bowl and mini-golf operator Puttshack, who will open early next year.


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