Bloomingdale’s reveals plans for SoNo Collection opening
NORWALK — Two weeks in advance of opening in South Norwalk, Bloomingdale’s revealed Friday additional details of its new department store slated for The SoNo Collection mall with plans for charity events to benefit local nonprofits.
Bloomingdale’s will become The SoNo Collection’s second anchor store after Nordstrom, with the mall to have between 80 and 100 in-line stores and restaurants at full operation. About two dozen have opened in the mall’s first three weeks, including a pair of eateries inside Nordstrom, with developer Brookfield Properties providing no estimate Friday when asked how many more will debut by the time Bloomingdale’s opens.
Brookfield managers had previously promised a big month of November store openings in advance of Black Friday weekend, with Bloomingdale’s the centerpiece when it opens at 10 a.m. Nov. 14. The store is running extended hours until 10 p.m. that Thursday through Saturday, and will be open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on that Sunday.
The SoNo Collection store will be Bloomingdale’s lone location in Connecticut — the next closest is at The Westchester mall in White Plains, N.Y. — with parent company Macy’s operating namesake department stores at the Danbury Fair, Stamford Town Center and Westfield Trumbull malls; and smaller Bluemercury beauty stores in Greenwich, Darien, New Canaan, Westport and New Haven.
As of Friday morning, Bloomingdale’s listed about a dozen open positions for The SoNo Collection store, including seasonal help for the holidays.
Like Nordstrom, The SoNo Collection Bloomingdale’s will total 150,000 square feet of space, including a home furnishings and decor department in addition to fashion apparel, footwear, accessories and cosmetics.
Bloomingdale’s has a major recent product introduction as well — an online clothing rental service akin to those offered by Rent the Runway and Gwynnie Bee, with the department store pairing with the CaaStle “clothing as a service” startup for its new My List at Bloomingdale’s. The service costs $149 a month, with subscribers keeping apparel for as long as they want and able to buy articles they rent.
“As it relates to fashion rental, we know that our customers want variety and discovery,” Macy’s CEO Jeff Gennette said during an August conference call with investment analysts. “Learnings from Bloomingdale’s will inform the development of a similar rental service at Macy’s in the near future.”
Bloomingdale’s opening weekend in Norwalk will include culinary demonstrations, cosmetics demos, arts and crafts for children, and musical performances from Pete Francis and Friends with guest Bakithi Kumalo and the Paul Green Rock Academy.
As the case with its cross-mall rival Nordstrom, Bloomingdale’s is using its opening week in Norwalk to support area philanthropic causes. On Nov. 14, Bloomingdale’s will host a brunch alongside JDRF, which supports research to find a cure for type 1 diabetes. That evening, Bloomingdale’s will host a cocktail party at The SoNo Collection store to benefit Person-to-Person, which from offices in Norwalk, Stamford and Darien provides financial and living assistance to people with needs.
On Nov. 16, a fashion show is scheduled in association with the Stepping Stones Museum for Children a few blocks north on West Avenue, and another brunch on Nov. 17 will benefit OPUS, a Darien nonprofit that funnels support to Person-to-Person.
Alex.Soule@scni.com; 203-842-2545; @casoulman