Complexe Les Ailes
Complexe Les Ailes was formerly the name of a shopping centre located in downtown Montreal, Quebec, Canada at 677 Sainte-Catherine Street West, at the corner of University Street. The 11 floors multipurpose property currently houses an office component of 550,000 sq ft (51,000 m2) known under the name 1500 University on the upper floors, as well as a retail gallery of 225,000 sq ft (20,900 m2) with more than 60 stores on its three first floors.
Complexe Les Ailes
|Location||Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Architect||Ross and Macdonald|
|No. of stores and services||60|
|Total retail floor area||225,000 sq ft (20,900 m2)|
|No. of floors||3|
The former Complexe Les Ailes mall was visited by over 11 million shoppers every year. It had direct access to Montreal's "underground city" and the McGill metro station. Along with Place Montreal Trust and the Montreal Eaton Centre, Complexe Les Ailes constituted Ivanhoe Cambridge's self-branded Sh3pping trio of shopping malls.
A bronze statue of hockey player Maurice Richard and a three floors high tableau made by fine arts enamel painter Bernard Séguin Poirier are at the former Complexe Les Ailes.
The mall owner, Ivanhoé Cambridge, announced in March 2014 that it would merge the Complexe Les Ailes with the neighbouring Montreal Eaton Centre mall, and the newly merged complex will be renamed. However it was later decided the former Complexe Les Ailes space would just be used to expand the Montreal Eaton Centre, and preserve the latter's name. The two malls will be renovated so that they will have the same "look and feel" once merged. This change will restore the Eaton's name back to very same building that once housed Montreal's flagship Eaton's department store.
The building was built in the early 1900s for the Goodwin's department store and originally only three storeys tall. In 1925, it was sold to Eaton's, and the firm Ross and Macdonald was commissioned to build more floors. This property – known at the time as the Eaton's building – was home to Montreal's largest department store for decades and was expanded three times during the years. First, in 1927 three floors were added, and then in 1930-1931 it was built up to nine stories. The top floor included Eaton's Ninth Floor Restaurant, an Art Deco design inspired by the dining room of the famous Île-de-France boat, was created following Jacques Carlu architect plans. Third, in 1958-1959, the building was expanded toward de Maisonneuve Boulevard. In 1967, a new development, in the form of an underground link to the city's newly constructed metro line, via the McGill metro station, was introduced to the Eaton's building.
In 1999, Ivanhoé Cambridge acquired the property following the closure of the Eaton's chain. After considerable redevelopment work between 2000 and 2002, including gutting and complete redesign of the interior, this flagship of the Montreal retail scene was transformed into the building now known as Complexe Les Ailes and 1500 University.
Les Ailes de la Mode store was the centre's main retailer which occupied one third of the total area, but Les Ailes de la Mode was closed in 2016. Boutiques such as Forever 21, SAQ Signature, Orchestra, New Balance, m0851, Swarovski and located in three levels of shopping space.
In its opening, the shopping mall housed several retailers including Lacoste, Jacob, Guess, Costa Blanca, La Senza and Archambault. As Les Ailes de la Mode began shifting into a discount store, visits to the mall decreased which caused all of these stores to close or relocate. Other boutiques such as Swarovski, SAQ Sélection, Fruits & Passion, m0851 and Bedo have remained loyal to the mall since its inauguration. But its vacancy rate is relatively high, with more than half the retail spaces on the third floor being unused.
- "Sh3pping". Ivanhoé Cambridge. Archived from the original on October 23, 2013. Retrieved November 19, 2012.
- Fournier, Marie-Eve (21 March 2014). "Les Ailes fermeront aussi à Brossard et à Sainte-Foy". La Presse. Archived from the original on 21 March 2014. Retrieved 21 March 2014.
- https://www.retail-insider.com/retail-insider/2018/1/ivanhoe-cambridge-montreal-eaton-centre Montreal Eaton Centre Overhaul Details Revealed
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