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  1. B

    Ikea

    My thoughts exactly. I know that current design trends favour the neutral, devoid-of-personality, welcome-to-the-dystopia look, but I found it a bit crushing that IKEA has also embraced this aesthetic to the near-exclusion of everything else. I remember when IKEA was daring, boldly colourful...
  2. B

    Restaurant Comings & Goings

  3. B

    Hudson's Bay Company

    Indeed, this has all the signs.
  4. B

    Hudson's Bay Company

    Looks to me like they've entered the shrinking selection/sales death spiral: So if sales aren't doing well at a store, there's inevitably talk about improving metrics per square footage. An often-used tactic is to pare down selection to "focus on fundamentals" or something like that. Often the...
  5. B

    Toronto Eaton Centre

    Wasn't the whole reason the Richtree chain came into being because they lost the rights to the Mövenpick name?
  6. B

    Hudson's Bay Company

    Oh, all of this so much.
  7. B

    Toronto Toronto | L-Tower | 204.82m | 58s | Cityzen | Daniel Libeskind

    They are finally starting to replace the missing windows on the north side.
  8. B

    Restaurant Comings & Goings

    Let's not kid ourselves with the whole "Oh, we're much too fussy and demanding to accept low-quality fare like the Olive Garden!" narrative. Far worse chains than Olive Garden have thrived in Ontario, and continue to do so. I remind you all that Pizza Pizza is still the #1 pizza delivery chain...
  9. B

    Restaurant Comings & Goings

    Moved from a large prominent space to a smallish, hidden, dark basement, so right there they lost a lot of potential. But far worse was that the newer location didn't have the fresh chips. Once upon a time, the chain was fantastic. The story reminds me of Lime Rickey's, another once-incredible...
  10. B

    The Retail Apocalypse

    Amazon isn't nearly as big a factor as the media likes to portray. Online sales in the USA are still only 10% of retail (see https://www.marketwatch.com/story/amazon-is-actually-the-weakest-of-the-big-us-retailers-2017-08-30 ). The number is about half that in Canada. I doubt Amazon dominates in...
  11. B

    Woodbine Centre

    I doubt it. The general belief right now seems to be that mainstream malls are "over" and a relic from the 70s/80s, and there's less of a demand for them now than ever. Woodbine Centre is obviously failing; it's hard to see any business rationale for expanding on the concept.
  12. B

    Restaurant Comings & Goings

    I figure it comes down to two things: - Quality going down as the brand expanded. I remember when it first opened, the food was fantastic, the prices were cheap, and there was always a lineup to get in. But as they began to expand, it seemed like quality began a slow but steady drop across the...
  13. B

    Yorkdale Shopping Centre

    Yes, I recall the one at Atrium on Bay always being busy. I still miss OG. Some of my American friends chide me for wanting to go to one when I visit them, reminding me that "it's not real Italian food" as if it wasn't blatantly obvious.
  14. B

    Yorkdale Shopping Centre

    The short review: it's a bit overhyped IMHO, but it's not without merit. A bit longer: It's not the be-all and end-all of dining, but I will say it is much better than the Rainforest Café (ugh, never again). Never been to Planet Hollywood so I have no opinion on that one. A large part of the...
  15. B

    Toronto Toronto | Church of Scientology | ?m | 8s

    I seem to recall it being a monochrome screen of some sort, displaying a cycle of text ads which was visible far down Yonge. But that was long, long ago, and my memory isn't the greatest.
  16. B

    Sears Canada (1952-2017)

    Nope. First of all, much of Sears business is soft goods, and that's something which just doesn't translate well to online. Second, Sears had a large presence in smaller cities and rural areas, and many of those locations were vital to their surrounding communities. Don't believe the...
  17. B

    Toronto Toronto | Aura at College Park | 271.87m | 78s | Canderel | Graziani + Corazza

    Anyone remember the Sheraton Centre's eastern section of the PATH, back before it was connected to The Bay and was a dead-end? Dark, desolate, and little reason for anyone to ever be there. Aura's lower level reminds me of that, except darker, even more desolate, and with the ever-present odour...
  18. B

    The Retail Apocalypse

    Sometimes these are one and the same. :) In the late 70s and early 80s, there were many attempts to replicate the success of the Toronto Eaton Centre across the province, scaling them accordingly to the size of the city. Most of the ones in smaller cities flopped, often because there were...
  19. B

    The Retail Apocalypse

    Yes; Dollarama. http://business.financialpost.com/news/retail-marketing/dollarama-shares-leap-on-earnings-and-plans-to-open-hundreds-of-more-stores-accept-credit-cards

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