ACROSS | The European Retail Real Estate Magazine

Factory Outlets

Parndorf Fashion Outlet — More Frequency with Style

Viennese Art Nouveau is the inspiration for the new designs of Austria’s Parndorf Fashion Outlet and Freeport Fashion Outlet. The outlet owners have further ambitions: purchases are planned across Europe.

Thomas Seikmann, CEO & Owner´s representative Parndorf Fashion Outlet & Freeport Fashion Outlet, is also the developer of, and a partner in, Roses Designer Outlet in Croatia, which is increasingly targeting the Slovenian and southeast Austrian markets since a new highway link was opened. Image: Parndorf Fashion Outlet

If you stroll through Fashion Outlet Parndorf in eastern Austria today, you’ll already have a lasting impression of its ambitious expansion plans.

The outlet is characterized by stunning Art Nouveau elements on the mall’s façade, replicas of the golden Vienna Secession dome in the entryway near the new central car park, and the playful elegance of Vienna at the turn of the 19th century.

The result is a significant upgrade compared to its previous positioning.

The owners are investing around €50 million in the gradual reconstruction and expansion of the site.

It’s an investment that could pay dividends: After all, the owner-run Parndorf Fashion Outlet and neighboring McArthurGlen Designer Outlet make up the largest outlet destination in Europe, with over 5 million visitors per year.

Everything NEW: New entrances, new parking spaces, new connections, new sales areas.

The new design’s first successes are already visible.

“Creating new entrances guarantees new customer flows. In addition, four central, canopied connections increase frequency and the tenants are showing a lot of interest: The new component was already more than 60% leased before construction started,” said CEO & owner´s representative Thomas Seikmann.

In 2018, the project will receive an additional extension and have a total sales area of 30,000 sq m. In addition, a Cineplexx cinema, motel, leisure facilities, and additional foodservice facilities are being built in Fashion Outlet Parndorf’s immediate vicinity. “Parndorf Fashion Outlet will be directly in the center of an entire outlet destination,” said Seikmann.

Image: Parndorf Fashion Outlet

Operational synergies are expected via the acquisition of 40 Ekazent (local shopping centers) locations in Vienna according Seikmann, the Ekazent Group’s new managing director.

As for outlets, Freeport Fashion Outlet in Kleinhaugsdorf on the Czech-Austrian border was acquired in 2015. Freeport Fashion Outlet was previously part of the Freeport Retail and VIA Group portfolio and comprises a rental area of approximately 22,400 sq m with around 75 shops. The site attracts more than 1.8 million visitors annually.

Freeport Fashion Outlet

Reconstruction work on Freeport Fashion Outlet began in July of this year. The goal is to distinguish the outlet visually as well from the competition in the future and to create an even more pleasant and friendly shopping atmosphere for its customers. Here, too, everything is marked by Viennese Art Nouveau.

The entire outlet center was visually enhanced, winning over new top tenants. The center’s exterior façade is being completely revitalized in Viennese Secession style. The well-known tower and yellow wave in the entryway are being replaced with an impressive Art Nouveau gate with golden ornaments.

The main building will also be six meters taller. The overall picture is being rounded off with a new gate on the corner at the roundabout, an architecturally impressive arcade, and automatic doors, bringing even greater comfort and a newly conceived presentation of the brand mix at the highest level.

Image: Freeport Fashion Outlet

Las Vegas’s Caesar’s Palace was the ambitious inspiration: A sky was hung above the indoor center, giving it a “shopping street” feeling, says Thomas Seikmann, who is also responsible for the design and concept of all the sites.

The optical similarities create synergy between Freeport Fashion Outlet and Parndorf Fashion Outlet to increase both brands’ recognition and clearly to communicate the links between the two locations to the outside world. “The acquisition of Freeport is an extraordinary success story for us,” says owner Franz Kollitsch.

“We want to continue to expand and buy outlets in Europe. It was therefore a logical step to take over the operation of these outlets ourselves and build our own operating structure under the Ekazent Group brand – similar to all major outlet and shopping center developers – to establish close links to our tenants and customers,” explained owner Erwin Krause.

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