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It is a complex task to ensure project profitability. There is a struggle between doing what is right and what is reasonable. As an expert in the world F&B development Will Odwarka, founder and CEO of Dubai-based firm Heartatwork Hospitality Consulting, states in his newest column: “However, in an ever-growing and competitive landscape, it is crucial to establish distinguishing factors that are recognizable and embrace them wholeheartedly.”

Frequency, length of stay, atmosphere – there are many reasons why gastronomic offerings are an essential part of retail. Olaf Hohmann, Head of Retail Gastronomy Research at the EHI Retail Institute, uses Germany as an example to show the development, trends, and potential of retail gastronomy.

Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (URW) and Union Investment have maintained a very successful partnership for many years in relation to Köln Arcaden, Riem Arcaden in Munich and Spandau Arcaden in Berlin, which are among the leading retail properties in the sector. With the management contracts, which have now been extended ahead of schedule on a long-term basis, the two companies are once again confirming their cooperation and creating a long-term joint perspective for the three top assets. In future, the focus will be on further optimising the tenant structure in line with the major sector megatrends as well as on mixed-use components and sustainability measures.

“Le big TamTam” is an extraordinary project in the heart of Hamburg’s city center that combines culinary diversity, entertainment, and modern shopping – all within a heritage-protected building. A colorful food market, complete with an event stage and central bar, is being developed on an area of 2,000 sq m in the basement level of Hamburg’s Hanseviertel district. Extensive remodeling work has been underway since last year. The team at umdasch The Store Makers is responsible for general contracting work and furniture construction for this flagship project.

CPI Property Group has appointed CBRE as manager of its STOP SHOP retail park portfolio in Serbia, which comprises 14 retail parks in 14 cities and more than 120,000 sq m of leasable area. CBRE will provide integrated asset management solutions, including financial and property accounting services, leasing services, and will oversee all operational aspects of the property and tenants.

Susan Hagerty Bonsak is the new CEO of Placewise and, in this role, one of the recent members of the ACROSS Advisory Board. She strongly believes in footfall and the future of physical malls. In her first interview with ACROSS, she shares her view on the European shopping center industry, the importance of data connected with technology, and why a collaborative focus of all stakeholders is so important.

In the heart of Riga, a revolution in retail festivity is unfolding. Spice Riga, a leading shopping center, is transforming into a breathtaking Christmas paradise, thanks to a groundbreaking collaboration with MK Illumination. This bespoke project, planned for 2023–2025, is not just a decoration initiative, but a reimagination of the shopping experience during the most wonderful time of the year.

After the extended Eurovea waterfront that includes Slovakia’s first skyscraper and the success of debut London projects, now J&T REAL ESTATE (JTRE) present Downtown Yards – a truely community orientated mixed use project.

Peel is celebrating a milestone year for Trafford Palazzo, the UK’s first next-generation experience centre. With nearly 5600 sq m of new deals secured in 2023, investment into TP Glow – Trafford Palazzo’s dedicated white box promotional space – and exciting developments adjacent to the centre, the destination has grown its footfall by 7% in the year.

The grand opening of Westfield Hamburg-Überseequartier in Hamburg, scheduled to take place in spring 2024, will mark the completion of Unibail-Rodamco Westfield’s (URW) largest inner-city development project. In an interview with ACROSS, Andreas Hohlmann, Managing Director Austria & Germany, talks about the role of retail and lifestyle destinations in modern society, the five trends that must be observed, and why size matters.

It’s a good and atmospheric start to the pre-Christmas business: that much can be said after the first Advent weekend and a high-turnover Black Week in the previous week. Center operator SES and store owners are entering the coming weeks in an optimistic mood.

The F&B sector has changed significantly in recent years, not only in terms of the size of the market, but also in the variety and quality of the offering. As rents continue to rise in Europe, space previously dominated by fashion retailers is now being occupied by trendy gastronomic restaurants. People have evolved from collecting “things” to collecting “experiences”, and shopping centers have adapted to this change by improving and expanding their gastronomic offerings. Food and beverage (F&B) will play an even more crucial role in the success of retail real estate.

The biggest challenge facing the F&B industry is the cost of doing business. While the coronavirus has run its course through the markets, operators are struggling to return to profitability in the face of current economic challenges. Ian Hanlon, Director of Coverpoint, explains how the current challenges can be addressed and highlights trends in the shopping center food scene using best practice examples from the industry.

The European shopping center market overvalues design and investment but needs to pay more attention to atmosphere, interaction, and service, says Will Odwarka. This hurts the centers and especially their gastronomy section. The founder and CEO of Dubai-based Heartatwork Hospitality Consulting explains in his conversation with ACROSS editor Reinhard Winiwarter why excellent, personable service is the prerequisite for everything in the field of gastronomy.

Time Out Market is one of the first food hall concepts in Europe. From Lisbon, it has expanded internationally. The list of interested parties, from cities, operators, and restaurants, who want to be part of this success story is long, but new locations are carefully chosen. Sandy Hayek, CEO of Time Out Market, and Ana Alcobia, VP Iberia, explain the USP of their concept, the criteria they use to select locations and restaurants, and why being a media house at its core is so crucial for their success.

Today, more than ever, a first-class location, excellent management, and continuous further development are decisive for the future of a retail property. In addition to the location-specific sector and tenant mix, the gastronomic offer is crucial for success – as ECE Marketplaces shows.