Retail update at Yonge and Eg
More stores have closed in the neighbourhood. David Findlay closed its doors recently as did the high-end florist. I can’t remember the name, unfortunately.
This again brings up the question of what does well in this neighbourhood. Restaurants, clearly, especially Italian ones. SIP recently opened and Centro rebranded as Vita Sociale.
But what about retail? The Club Monaco and Gap do well – they have the recognizable name and quite a lot of foot traffic but the independent stores aren’t doing that well. Anecdotally, it could be because the Yonge and Eglinton shopper isn’t very creative with their clothing. They tend to the tried and true. When I say anecdotally, I mean conversations I’ve had with a few retailers in the area. They say it’s really about developing relationships with their customers instead of servicing them as they walk in like on Queen, Bloor or King streets. Knowing what the area buys is also important and curating that helps a lot.
For example, Consign Toronto‘s owner Dag Larsen says that his clients like good accessories (Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Michael Kors sells well) and business attire. His Queen Street store tends towards the trendy and fun.
This is why I’m excited for Canon Blanc to be in the neighbourhood on a permanent basis. They had a pop-up for the Christmas season and are now here. Their lines are from France and like the expectation of French clothes – quiet and luxurious. They’ve clearly furnished the store for this neck of the woods. I succumbed to a blazer – grey wool with a cherry red trim on the label. I may have worn it four days in a row. Gorgeous accessories as well.
I’m not worried about the price point. People line up in their cars to get into Sporting Life. What I am worried about is awareness.