Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 25/10/2010 (3275 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Nearly a year after losing McNally Robinson, Polo Park Shopping Centre is preparing to welcome another big-box retailer — for a little while anyway.
Calendar Club, an operator of seasonal kiosks and year-round stores in shopping malls across Canada, has starting moving into the 20,000-square-foot space that was vacated by Winnipeg-based McNally last December. It's scheduled to stay until the end of Boxing Week.
A 50 per cent-owned subsidiary of Indigo Books & Music Inc., Calendar Club's specialty is selling a large variety of calendars, games and toys during the holiday season.
Deborah Green, general manager of Polo Park, said the store, which she has been told will also sell books, should open this weekend.
"For now, they see an opportunity at Christmas," she said, noting the remaining 10,000 square feet of unused space will be blocked off to shoppers.
Green said the best-case scenario would be for consumers to flock to the store en masse and convince it to stay for the long term. Even better, she'd love to hear that Indigo felt it could make a go of the space with a book store — but she's not holding her breath.
"If we could recreate another big book store down there it would be awesome. But in my heart, I don't think it's going to happen," she said. "My goal is to put somebody in there permanently. That's going to have priority over a temporary tenant, for sure."
McNally Robinson closed its Polo Park store and its Toronto location after filing for bankruptcy protection last December. It previously shuttered its outlet at Portage Place in 2007. It continues to operate stores at Grant Park Shopping Centre and in Saskatoon.
Green said Calendar Club's arrival follows the departure of the Explore Store toy shop in April.
"It's the perfect mix to go with the rest of the shopping centre," she said.
John Winter, a Toronto retail analyst, said the fact Calendar Club is only signing on for a couple of months isn't great news but at least it's filling a significant vacancy during the busiest time of the year. "If sales are spectacular, they might reconsider the location," he said.
Polo Park is also preparing to welcome a trio of high-profile clothing tenants — Forever 21, BCBGMAXAZRIA and Hollister Co. in the coming weeks.