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Simon says it’s plowing $4B into experiential re-do

It’s one of the world’s biggest mall owners, so it’s not surprising that Simon Property Group is investing a fortune in new experiences for its shoppers. A little surprising, though, is that Simon appears to be getting little innovation for its $4 billion.

Most of the upgrades follow the tried-and-true formula for mall reinvention: upgraded food and beverage, boutique hotels, luxury residential, new age fitness centers, and lavish gathering places. To wit:

  • The boutique AC Hotel at Phipps Plaza in the Buckhead section of Atlanta is a Marriott creation, but it will house a branch of the famed Nobu restaurant. Also new to Phipps is a LifeTime wellness center, a Class A office building, a 319-unit residential building, and an AMC 14 Theatre.

  • Simon’s biggest mall in King of Prussia, Pa. (3 million sq. ft. of retail GLA) got an “ultra-luxury corridor along with the office space, residences, and hotel.

  • “Savor” is a new dining area concept being launched by Simon at King of Prussia and The Westchester in White Plains, N.Y. The idea is to populate the luxed-up food court with trendy eateries like Shake Shack, Sweetgreen, Mighty Quinn’s, and Juice Generation.

  • Grounds worthy of the setting in Thornton, Colo., are coming to Denver Premium Outlets in the fall. An outdoor village and spacious courtyards amid Rocky Mountain views will leverage the local natural beauty, said Simon, to appeal to the outdoor lifestyle of both locals and tourists.

"The world of retail is ever-changing, and Simon is thriving," said CEO David Simon.
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