Downtown: Hudson's Bay's 851,000 square foot flagship 'Queen Street' store has room for a Saks store, though it would require an awkward reconfiguration of the store's current setup. We're not sure if a Saks would be preferable up at the Yorkville Hudson's Bay while the Queen Street location remains as the primary flagship location for Hudson's Bay and its related concessions (including a 19,000 square foot TopShop/TopMan and a 20,000 square foot Kleinfeld Bridal, which opens on the store's seventh floor next year).
Rideau Centre: A Saks Shop-in-store (or even a smaller full-line Saks) carved out of the 335,000 square foot Ottawa Rideau Street Hudson's Bay store would compliment Rideau Centre's Nordstrom store (which will open in 2015) as well as La Maison Simons in the spring of 2015. Competitor Holt Renfrew, located way over at 240 Sparks Street in Downtown Ottawa, would likely see an uncertain future as a result of a Saks in Ottawa.
Finding a suitable location for Saks in Edmonton might be a challenge, though some sort of Saks shop-in-store might work within Hudson's Bay's 237,000 square foot Southgate Shopping Centre store. The West Edmonton Mall Hudson's Bay, at only 164,000 square feet, would likely be too small for any Saks configuration. Downtown Edmonton's Holt Renfrew, one of the chain's lesser-performing stores, would only see a reduction in sales with a Saks opening in one of Edmonton's suburban malls.
We've consulted with a retail analyst who says they're not sure if Montreal's economy or language laws would welcome Saks Fifth Avenue to the city at the moment. Downtown Montreal has a 655,000 square foot Hudson's Bay store that is currently undergoing renovations to include luxury department 'The Room'.
Last week we reported that Bonnie Brooks was exiting her role as president of Hudson's Bay. Could it be she's in line to run Saks Fifth Avenue? We'll be discussing this and more later this week as we continue to follow Saks Fifth Avenue's possible arrival in Canada.
[Saks Fifth Avenue website]
[Hudson's Bay Company website]