A shopping mall in St. Petersburg, Fla. being marketed by New York City retail maven Faith Hope Consolo may have several new tenants, but there is some confusion as to who is really on board due to differing accounts by Consolo, the prospective tenants and the mall owner, the Tampa Bay Times reported.
Shops at St. Pete—formerly known as BayWalk—is an eagerly anticipated downtown retail complex. Last week, Bill Edwards, a principal with the project’s developer Edwards Group, said he wouldn’t name tenants until the majority of them had signed. But on Tuesday, Consolo told the Tampa Bay Times that several stores were on board, including the West Palm Beach-based resort-wear store Island Company, two Iron Chef restaurants, lingerie store Soma and Luxottica, the parent company of Sunglass Hut and LensCrafters. She added that Shops was in talks with J. Crew, two spas and a fragrance boutique.
When asked to comment, representatives from several of these stores told the Tampa Bay Times that they were either unwilling to comment, or in the case of Island Company, not currently considering signing. The newspaper could not reach Consolo for comment on their statements.
For his part, Edwards—who bought the Shops in September 2011 for $5.2 million–expressed his frustration at the talk of potential deals, saying they were bad for the prospects of the redevelopment, in which he has invested $30 million. [Tampa Bay Times] —Hiten Samtani