Teen consumers and fast-fashion addicts alike, you’re about to get the best news ever: Primark, an Ireland-based retailer, is opening its doors in King of Prussia this November. In case you’re unfamiliar with the brand, imagine H&M, Forever 21 or Zara, take 20 to 40 percent off, and you’ve got Primark. Yup.
Close your eyes and imagine the first thing that pops in your mind when we say, “King of Prussia.” More than likely, you’re envisioning a mega-mall full of high-end retail, gobs of food, air conditioning and airport-like parking. You probably go there to shop or eat, but you’re not really there to enjoy the experience, right?
Tom Sebastian, senior vice president acquisition and development of Maryland-based JBGR Retail, wants to switch things up a bit with new 20-acre development called the King of Prussia Town Center, which he described as a “upscale project” with an lively town square hub in the middle surrounded by a bevy of full-service dining options. “This is going to be a very active space,” said Sebastian. “This will be the only lifestyle shopping center in the market.”
The idea is to bring a little of what people love about the Philadelphia lifestyle, namely a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere with outdoor dining, a mix of local and national shops, and activities for all ages, to an area typically known for gridlock and one-stop shopping.
“This is going to be unlike your typical retail strip shopping or grocery community center,” said Sebastian of the $100 million plus project, “[The King of Prussia Town Center] will be where people will want to gather in their free time.”
Even though temps are nearing triple digits, I can’t stop myself from lusting over fall buys. And Burberry’s latest addition did nothing to quell my autumnal leanings. The brand just launched (as in, yesterday) a custom “Scarf Bar” both in stores and online. Shoppers can choose a scarf — color, cashmere weight, pattern — and have it monogrammed. (For inspiration, click here.)
Ready to buy? Me, too. I spoke to a representative at the KOP location, who confirmed that they just finished setting up the monogram bar, which is located directly in the front of the store. While they don’t offer the full monogramming in-store, you can check out all the designs and scarf options and order there.
So, summer? I see your sun, and I’m glad for it, but let’s get on with this whole fall thing, ‘kay?
Luke Palladino, who has a history with casino restaurants is adding another LP Steak at Valley Forge Casino Resort to his portfolio. The upscale steakhouse will open this October at the King of Prussia casino. The restaurant will be an upscale steakhouse with seating for up to 205 people in the main dining room plus 25 seats at the bar, 30 seats in the lounge area, and two private dining rooms.
LP Steak will replace Pacific Prime in the Valley Forge Casino, and will join other new features of the casino including the recently opened Valley Beach Poolside Club and the relaunch of the Valley Forge Music Fair.
LP Steak joins the Luke Palladino Hospitality Group, which also includes Palladino’s on Passyunk and Luke Palladino Seasonal Italian Cooking in Linwood, New Jersey.
LP Steak at Valley Forge Casino Resort [Foobooz]
This week, King of Prussia Business Improvement District relaunched a summertime arts initiative that gives locals something unique to do at lunchtime. Rock Your Lunch! is a free summer concert series that aims to create a more vibrant community and celebrate the 15,000-plus employees working in the district (and just anyone who wants to come hear some good tunes).
The standout attraction at the club is its 22,000-gallon, four-leaf-clover-style swimming hole. It is open to the public Thursdays and Fridays from 2 p.m. until midnight; Saturdays from 11 am until midnight; and Sundays 11 am to 11 pm. Best of all: After 6 pm, the pool is 21 or older.
Well, check you out, KoP! We’ve caught word of the King of Prussia Business Improvement District joining forces with Upper Merion Township to spearhead a new Linear Park along First Avenue. According to a press release, the business park is part of their “Complete Streets” plan for First Avenue and is slated to replace a strip of under-utilized lawn areas between North Gulph and Allendale Roads in King of Prussia’s recently rezoned mixed-use district.
Public amenities to look forward to with the upcoming green space include multi-use bicycle and pedestrian paths, seating areas, benches, trash receptacles and site lighting. From a long-term view, the new space is expected to become “a venue for people to exercise, socialize, or reflect, and creates opportunities for ecological stewardship,” as LRSLAstudio principal Julie Bush put it (the firm was hired as the landscape architect). The First Avenue Linear Park is anticipated to increase access throughout the business park district, amp up pedestrian safety, and make way for potential green infrastructure opportunities, among other things.
Thanks to some new zoning changes that promotes density and mixed-use projects in the business park area, King of Prussia is looking to become more than just a place with one of the largest mall in all the land. The Philadelphia Business Journal’s Natalie Kostelni reports that homebuilder Bentley Homes has teamed up with Cornerstone Communities out of Villanova to create a $60 million plan to bring a 320-unit residential community to 751 Vandenburg Boulevard. It is “one of the first projects that will take advantage of the new zoning,” says Kostelni.
The 20-acre site, which rests north of the mall and east of Valley Forge National Historic Park/Valley Forge Casino in the King of Prussia Business Park, will consist of four apartment buildings that will have a central courtyard with “landscaped rooms” for community enjoyment. Plans also include a cafe that will be open to the public, according to Kostelni.
- $60M 320-apartment complex planned for King of Prussia [Philadelphia Business Journal]
Headlines: Charges in Real Estate Scheme…
For all of those in the suburbs who missed out on Center City Restaurant Week, the King of Prussia District is holding their own version, running from March 2 to March 8, called dineKOP.
Ready for your next Thursday night plans? We’re throwing an exclusive shopping party at Ted Baker in the King of Prussia Mall. Guests will join me, the Ted Baker styling team and men’s style expert Sabir Peele for an exclusive night of after-hours shopping, live music, food, drinks and major discounts, plus the chance to shop Ted Baker’s new spring 2015 collection before anyone else.
The evening is first-come, first-serve — we’re only allowing about 30 people to join us — so be sure to mark down the date (Thursday, March 5th, from 6pm to 9pm), and RSVP here. About those discounts …