Burnaby BC's Metropolis at Metrotown is becoming more upscale with the inclusion of Canada's second Weekend by MaxMara store, opening this September. Also opening this fall wil be Canada's third Microsoft store which was announced earlier this week. A Tag Heuer boutique recently opened adjacent to the mall's recently relocated Ann-Louise Jewellers. Gastown-based Oak + Fort has also opened its second Vancouver-area retail store at Metrotown.

Weekend by Max Mara location, marked by our source 'Seb' with a star
Weekend by Max Mara will be just over 2,000 square feet and will be located on the second level of the mall's 'Atrium Court'. Max Mara's Weekend label is a less expensive, more casual version of the mainline Max Mara label that has three Vancouver locations (three locations for a city is very rare  most cities that have a Max Mara store only have one location). Canada's first Weekend by Max Mara store opened in November 2012 at Vancouver's Oakridge Shopping Centre

The Tag Heuer boutique at Ann-Louise Jewellers (top image) is not a corporately owned store, but a small shop-in-store with a mall entrance. Nevertheless, its mall entrance gives it a presence that brings prestige to the mall. There are currently no free-standing Tag Heuer boutiques in Canada though we have word that franchised Tag stores could open in Toronto and Vancouver. 

Vancouver-based Oak + Fort opened its second location at Metrotown last month. The retailer is known for its interesting and somewhat alternative fashions. Its other Vancouver location is on Water Street in Gastown, and it has a store on Whyte Avenue in Edmonton. We think it's a bit unusual for a retailer with somewhat funky, historical locations like Gastown and Whyte Avenue to open in a suburban mall like Metrotown.

These retailers join other moderately upscale stores including Coach, Browns Shoes, Michael Kors, Kiehl's and Sephora. Several years ago these retailers would have been unheard of at Metrotown, as the mall has long been considered mid-market and its location on the Skytrain line has made it popular with a younger, less fashionable group of shoppers from southeastern suburbs such as Surrey. 

Microsoft store-to-be
We recently reported on an expansion at Metropolis that will include the demolition of a Sears-owned site, to be replaced by seven towers and new retail (including a replacement Sears store). Other parts of the mall will be seeing renovations and new construction, and we'll go into more detail about that at a later date. 

Thank you to our retail insider 'Seb' who provided us content and tips, as well as the photos of Oak + Fort, Microsoft Store hoardings and the floorplan with Weekend by Max Mara's location. 

[Metropolis at Metrotown website]