Luxury Stores Exit Russell Street in CWB

Posted by Ed 10 days ago 
Luxury stores exit Russell Street, Hong Kong, once the world’s priciest retail strip, amid tourist slump over Covid-19 and protests
- With tourism drying up thanks to anti-government protests and Covid-19, luxury brands Rolex, Omega, La Perla and Kiehl’s have shut stores in Causeway Bay street
- Vacancy rates are at a record high, and more luxury stores could shut if mass-market or discount stores occupy the pricey premises the top brands vacated

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Ed 9 days ago
Rising vacancy, sliding rents in Hong Kong signal cracks in world’s most expensive retail strip to persist into new year
“Now that the big brands have left the scene, it is quite difficult to find new tenants,” said Tony Lo, director of shops at Midland IC&I. They are unlikely to be leased out this year as the pandemic has not been resolved, he added.
“I’m not very optimistic. Many of the shops in Causeway Bay cater to individual travellers [mostly from mainland China].” 

Emperor International, one of the bigger landlords on Russell Street, said some of its units “are for lease now,” according to WhatsApp reply to questions from the Post. The firm has “been in touch with different tenants,” it added.

Shop vacancy rate in Causeway Bay has risen to 11.6 per cent in August, according to data compiled by Centaline Commercial, more than tripling the level in January. The rate in Central has surged to 20.4 per cent from 8.1 per cent over the same period, and to 16.5 per cent from 10.5 per cent in Tsim Sha Tsui.

“Causeway Bay has almost zero tourists and people are reducing their outings,” said Raiky Wong, director of shops at Centaline Commercial. “The streets seem deserted these days.” 

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Ed 9 days ago 
What Do You Do When There are No Tenants to Replace your Bankrupt Tenants?
You set up a pop-up shop in what was once some of the priciest real estate in the world.
The collapse of retail rents and high vacancy rates in some of Hong Kong’s main shopping districts is forcing some landlords to get creative. Rather than leave their buildings standing idle, some are launching brand new, totally unrelated business ventures to fill the vacant space.
Two joint owners of a five-storey retail complex at 53 Carnarvon Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, for example, plan to open their first cosmetics store on the premises on September 17.
When the next round of lockdowns smash what's left of retail in Hong Kong, perhaps we'll see IFC shops piled high with racks of 'seconds' from China factories.  

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