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Mon 4 May 2009 05:14 PM

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Fashion Avenue opens at The Dubai Mall

Mall area includes 20m long catwalk, will house more than 70 fashion stores.

Fashion Avenue opens at The Dubai Mall
NOW OPEN: Fashion Avenue at The Dubai Mall will feature more than 70 flagship fashion shops.

The Dubai Mall has opened Fashion Avenue, a 440,000 square foot fashion area that includes a 20-metre long hydraulic catwalk.

The new fashion precinct will eventually house more than 70 signature or flagship stores, several of which will be making their Middle East debut.

Among the outlets already open are Jimmy Choo, Jean Paul Gaultier and Burberry.

As part of the ongoing “Festival@The Dubai Mall” event, highstreet fashion shows will be staged on the catwalk.

The shows will be held every weekend this month: May 7 to 9; 14 to 15; and 22 to 23, from 5-9pm.

Fashion Avenue has its own VIP entrance that will lead visitors straight to its most exclusive brands, including Chanel, Gucci and Armani.

The stores vary in size from 5,100 to over 9,000 square feet, making them the largest outlets in the region for many brands, Emaar Malls Group said in a statement.

“If a unique or limited edition piece is available in Dubai, The Dubai Mall will be the place to find it,” said the group’s chief executive, Nasser Rafi.

Emaar Malls Group is a unit of Emaar Properties.

The Dubai Mall last week announced a 30 day festival, “Festival@The Dubai Mall”, that it hopes will boost sales by up to 25 percent.

The festival will offer deep discounts, raffle draws and entertainment amid complaints about sluggish sales from some of its retailers.

Only half of the giant mall’s 1,200 stores were open at the November 4 launch.

Around 900 stores are now open and the remaining 300, including an entertainment section, will open over the next two quarters, chief executive Rafi said last week.

An exception will be US department store Bloomingdales, which is slated to open in the first quarter of 2010.

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