[Image Source]

After much anticipation, H&M has announced that it will open its first Winnipeg store at the Polo Park Shopping Centre. It will open in October 2014 and will be one of Canada's largest, spanning approximately 25,000 square feet.

Polo Park's Facebook page created hype this week by declaring that it had a "HUGE store announcement" to make. Many excited Facebook users guessed correctly and judging by the posted comments, H&M's Winnipeg entry has been long anticipated.

We can't confirm where H&M will open within the mall, and the mall's landlord Cadillac Fairview is being secretive about its eventual location. Upon review of Polo Park's lease plans and given the size of the new H&M store, we think it will occupy part of a former 97,000 square foot Zellers store on the second level of the mall. We've been told that the former Zellers space could be subdivided for between 25 and 30 new retailers, and H&M could be one of these.

Former Zellers space, expected to be subdivided, could include the new H&M store

According to sources, H&M has been searching for the "right space" in Winnipeg for several years. We speculated that H&M could open at Polo Park as part of an article where we discussed the possibility of Nordstrom and La Maison Simons opening in the mall.

H&M's largest Canadian store is at the Toronto Eaton Centre and it occupies 33,057 square feet, according to landlord Cadillac Fairview. Canada's second-largest H&M store at Vancouver's Pacific Centre is almost as large, measuring in at 31,437 square feet.

[Polo Park website]

[H&M website]