As retail experts warn of low inventory and delayed shipments this holiday shopping season, the Christiana Mall is gearing up for the yearly surge with several new stores scheduled to open this fall or winter.
The mall closed for almost three months at the start of the pandemic, but has been operating without interruption since and without restrictions since May. Its owners, Brookfield Properties, have added around a dozen stores and restaurants – mostly replacing small in-line retailers – in the 19 months since the coronavirus first reached Delaware.
Here’s what’s new.
Lovisa is an “affordable fashion jeweler” with locations nationwide, including several in New Jersey and New York shopping malls. It’s opening its first Delaware store in the wing of the Christiana Mall between Macy’s and Target. Brookfield spokesperson Rachel Wille said Lovisa is expected to open during the 2021 holiday season.
Purple, a mattress store, is opening a location in the same wing as Lovisa during the 2021 holiday season, Wille said. The company uses a hyper-elastic polymer its founders developed decades ago for use in critical care beds to create “no pressure” mattresses, pillows and seat cushions.
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The Christiana Mall will be home to one of the first Miniso stores on the U.S. East Coast.
Miniso is a Chinese retailer with some 4,800 locations worldwide specializing in household and consumer goods such as cosmetics, stationery, toys and kitchenware. It is planning to add around 25 U.S. stores this year, which will about double the company’s U.S. presence.
Miniso will be between JC Penney and Target and is expected to open during the holiday season, Wille said.
A Popeyes has been under construction in the mall’s food court since at least March. Brookfield initially said the fast food restaurant would open in summer 2021. The mall owner then said it would open Sept. 1. It now says Popeyes plans to open “ahead of the holiday season.”
Popeyes is replacing the Melt Shop.
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Tommy’s Tavern + Tap and Tio Taco + Tequila Bar
The Christiana Mall will fill two of its full-service restaurant spaces by the spring of next year, Wille said. Both concepts come from Triple T Hospitality Group, a restaurant group with roughly a dozen locations mostly in New Jersey.
Tommy’s Tavern + Tap will take over the former JB Dawson’s between Macy’s and Nordstrom on the west side of the mall, and Tio Taco + Tequila Bar will take over the former California Pizza Kitchen next door.
Triple T describes Tommy’s Tavern + Tap as a “rustic, industrial tavern and restaurant.” The menus for its existing locations include a variety of sandwiches, burgers and salads as well as coal-fired pizza and sushi. Tommy’s also has an extensive draft beer list.
Tio Taco + Tequila Bar pairs a “exciting, casual-sophisticated atmosphere” with craft cocktails, a variety of tequilas and foods like homemade guacamole.
JB Dawson’s and California Pizza Kitchen were among a handful of restaurants added around the exterior of the mall as part of renovations around a decade ago. They closed amid the pandemic.
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