26 September 2018 – Eje Prime
Torre Sevilla has been completed, six years on. The shopping centre, promoted by CaixaBank, will open its doors to the public today, whereby culminating an urban development program that began to take shape in the 1990s. The complex alone, located in the centre of Sevilla, has involved an investment of €100 million, a third of the total amount spent on the macro-project.
Torre Sevilla is opening its doors at the height of the Retail Apocalypse and at a turbulent time for the sector in Sevilla: Palmas Altas announced last week that it has changed its name to Lagoh, whilst the Alcora shopping centre project has been cancelled.
The new complex in Sevilla is a mixed development that includes, as well as a shopping centre, an office building, a Eurostars hotel, CaixaForum Sevilla and Parque de Magallanes. The shopping centre, designed by the Argentinian architect César Pelli, comprises two large buildings with a gross leasable area (GLA) of 26,700 m2 and a constructed surface area of 43,000 m2.
The complex will open its doors with a 95% occupancy rate, and with Primark, Fnac and Ikea as the drivers. “People don’t go shopping anymore, they go for a walk, and formats such as hypermarkets are no longer the drivers”, explains Antonio Cayuela, President of BuildingCenter and sole administrator of Puerto Triana (the company that controls the complex).
In this sense, Cayuela emphasises the location of Torre Sevilla, in the heart of the city, and its integration with the office building and hotel, which ensures footfall “every day of the week”.
“Shopping centres are changing, just like retail: the trend is now returning to local businesses, with smaller but very accessible formats, close to the city”, says the executive. The property developer forecasts that the centre will receive around 8 million visitors per year.
Torre Sevilla’s offer includes, amongst others, the first stores from Ikea, Primark and Xiaomi in the city centre, as well as restaurants and services such as a gym and a catering facility – a cross between a supermarket and a restaurant – serving homemade food to take away.
“Hypermarkets are no longer the drivers”, says Cayuela. “We have ruled out cinemas, because they occupy a lot of space, because there are lots of them and because in the era of Netflix, they are no longer attractive”, he says.
“Omnichannel” corner to compete with the internet
In this sense, Torre Sevilla is also planning to incorporate new concepts over the medium term to encourage omnichannel integration and attract footfall to the complex at a time when the online channel is gaining more and more traction.
In this sense, the company will launch a space called Omni Tech, which will integrate different omnichannel tools, such as click and collect. “We want to be a leader in the implementation of new ideas in terms of omnichannels; although I do not think that the online channel will ever completely substitute a physical purchase, it is important to have a good experience in person to attract people to stores”, says the executive.
Original story: Eje Prime (by Iria P. Gestal)
Translation: Carmel Drake