Construction begins on Sea Island designer outlet

Artist rendering of the Sea Island Luxury Outlet Centre Piazza.

Artist rendering of the Sea Island Luxury Outlet Centre Piazza.

British Columbia’s first luxury designer outlet centre is set to open in the spring of 2015, with construction now underway at the 30-acre site on YVR land.

McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Vancouver Airport—a partnership between Vancouver Airport Authority and McArthurGlen Group, Europe’s leading owner, developer and manager of designer outlets—will offer 35,000 square metres of luxury, designer and lifestyle retail on the northeast corner of Sea Island near the Templeton Canada Line station.

“This project reinforces our role in the economic development of the region,” said Tony Gugliotta, senior vice president, marketing and business development, Vancouver Airport Authority. “Not only will it increase the region’s destination appeal for travellers and create approximately 1,000 jobs, but it will also offer the airport an alternative revenue source that will allow us to continue building YVR as a premier global gateway which, in turn, will create even more jobs.”

The designer outlet centre, which will also help keep local dollars in the local economy, will be developed in two phases: the first phase will offer 22,500 square metres of retail space, including the most sought-after North American and European luxury brands, as well as restaurants and cafes, with 12,500 square metres added once all phases are open.

“McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Centre Vancouver Airport will offer a highly distinctive, luxury-oriented retail destination in Vancouver,” said Joan Jove, McArthurGlen’s development director for North America. “We are already seeing strong interest from leading European and North American fashion brands. Vancouver offers an excellent location, economic strength, tourism potential, as well as a strong partnership with Vancouver Airport Authority—all elements that guarantee success when opening a premium retail centre.”

The company’s Designer Outlets in Europe are known for brands such as Prada, Armani, Burberry, Gucci, Hugo Boss, Ralph Lauren, Salvatore Ferragamo, Ermenegildo Zegna and Michael Kors.

McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Vancouver Airport will feature two luxury piazzas, and is designed as an open-air village, with pedestrian-friendly walkways and tree-lined streets.

Design elements are inspired by iconic Vancouver architecture, including the city’s first post-office building, c. 1937 (now part of the Sinclair Centre complex), the Vancouver Rowing Club, c.1911, and the distinctive brick facades associated with historic Gastown.