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Framingham/Natick Retail NewsCenter

Natick Collection, New England's Premier Trendsetting Marketplace, Set To Open In September 2007

Title: Natick Collection, New England's Premiere Trendsetting Marketplace, Set To Open In September 2007

Author: Press Release

Publication: Press Release

Date of Publication: July 18, 2007

Corresponding Retail Development: Natick Collection 2007 Expansion

Corresponding Town: Natick

Web Site Link: http://www.ggp.com/Company/Pressreleases.aspx?mode=view&prid=366

Text:

NATICK, Mass., July 18, 2007 -- The heart of retail in New England is about to shift westward. General Growth Properties (NYSE: GGP) today confirmed details concerning the Sept. 7 opening of its highly anticipated addition to Natick Collection.

When doors to the center’s 550,000-square-foot expansion open, Natick Collection will offer six department stores – including Massachusetts’ first Nordstrom and first suburban Neiman Marcus – and 270 luxury retailers and restaurants. In all, the complex will span 1.7 million square feet and feature 215 luxury condominiums.

The remodeling and expansion project is the largest to date for developer General Growth Properties, which aims to make Natick Collection the hottest upscale shopping and dining destination in New England.

“The mix of upscale retailers and restaurants at Natick Collection will offer visitors unparalleled shopping, dining and entertainment experiences in line with the finest retail destinations across the country and around the world,” said John Bucksbaum, chief executive officer of General Growth Properties, owner of Natick Collection. “We are eager to begin welcoming shoppers to our expansion in early-September and believe the caliber of new shops coming to the MetroWest community will change the face of shopping in New England.”

THE COLLECTION

A highlight of the addition will be the stunning one-of-a-kind Neiman Marcus storefront designed by architects Elkus/Manfredi to suggest the luxurious folds of a women’s skirt encircling the store’s 100,000 square feet of shopping on two levels. Along with high-fashion Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom, anchor stores include Macy’s, Lord & Taylor, JCPenney and Sears. In addition, the expansion will feature 100 exceptional retailers and restaurants representing the ultimate in style and cuisine. Top luxury retailers such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Ralph Lauren, Burberry, Tiffany and Kate Spade will sit comfortably alongside unique restaurant concepts such as Sel de la Terre, Metropolitan Bar & Grill and Finale Dessert Company to create a one-of-a-kind destination combining the finest designers, fashions and eateries under one roof.

Natick Collection will house several first-to-market shops and new concept stores, including. Hannah Andersson, Martin + Osa and Zara, each making their Massachusetts debut.

THE SETTING

General Growth commissioned architects to make Natick Collection one of the country’s most beautiful shopping destinations. Inspired by the rolling hills and rich beauty of the town of Natick, 23 miles west of Boston, the center was designed by acclaimed architecture firm Beyer Blinder Belle to create a relaxing -- even serene -- shopping experience, with an undulating, gently sloping ceiling, acoustic paneling and simulated birch groves filtering cascading natural light.

The center’s interior will also mirror the use of birch surrounding the building’s exterior. A simulated birch grove with carefully placed tree trunks will be topped with a suspended canopy of thousands of abstracted leaves -- the vision of the project’s landscape architect, Martha Schwartz. In daylight, the leaves will catch and refract natural light from the center’s skylights. At night, the illuminated leaves will cast enchanting shadows. Warm wood and jewel-tone interior finishes complement floors of comfortable carpeting and natural stone tile. The existing center will transition to the expansion through a teardrop-shaped court featuring a spectacular mezzanine floating above an infinity fountain. Beyer Blinder Belle, the designers behind Rockefeller Center and Grand Central Terminal in New York, is known for its integrity in architectural design, historic preservation, interior design, urban design and master planning.

Six parking decks and valet parking on the property were designed to provide abundant spaces and easy entry and egress for visitors. Additional features of the indoor garages include bright sightlines, a spacious layout with distinctive auto lobbies and easy orientation through color, textures, light and graphics to direct shoppers to stores and restaurants. In addition, the property will offer respite from the retail rush with a meandering bicycle path and public walkway. The expansion’s 215 luxury condominiums, known as “Nouvelle at Natick,” connect to the center, making Natick Collection the first multi-use environment of its kind in New England.

About Natick Collection
Natick Collection will feature over 100 exceptional new stores including many of the nation’s top luxury retailers. When completed, this 60 acre property will house more than 1 million square feet of space and 7,000 parking spaces and valet parking. Designed by the highly respected architectural firm of Beyer Blinder Belle, and landscaped by the distinguished Massachusetts firm of Martha Schwartz Inc., Natick Collection is certain to become the premier lifestyle destination for the greater Boston area and beyond. In addition to the retail center, the complex will include 215 luxury condominium residences, to be known as “Nouvelle at Natick”, scheduled to open in the spring of 2008. Additional plans include a hotel, meandering bike path, public walkway and spacious rooftop garden for exclusive use by condominium residents.

About General Growth Properties
Natick Collection is owned and managed by General Growth Properties, Inc., the second largest U.S.-based publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). General Growth currently has an ownership interest in or management responsibility for a portfolio of more than 200 shopping malls in 45 states, as well as ownership in planned community developments and commercial office buildings. The portfolio totals approximately 200 million square feet of retail space and includes more than 24,000 retail stores nationwide. General Growth Properties, Inc. is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GGP.

   

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