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Bloomingdale's By the Beach: New Santa Monica Place Anchor Store Animates Space with SoCal Spirit

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New York City's Bloomingdale's is poised to open their 41st store--the 8th in California--which will anchor the newly remodeled Santa Monica Place mall. Taking a cue from their SoHo location, as well as drawing liberally from the aesthetic of the beach, the two floors of high-end fashion and accessories is set to appeal to the discerning customer in search of trends, color, style, and the customer service of Bloomingdale's.

The design of the store employs a "raw or almost brutal texture," explained a Bloomingdale's executive during a preview tour of the renovated space that first housed The Broadway when the mall opened in October 1980, and was last a Macy's. The store's iconic black-and-white checkerboard floors have a scruffed finish, and design elements reflect the spirit of using "reclaimed, reused, and repurposed" materials.

Upstairs in women's wear, a moving overhead rack transports dressed mannequins around the showroom, while behind the Forty Carrots frozen yogurt shop, in the Style Bar, dressing room "pods" can be raised and lowered to use the space for events or personal shopping, respectively. Images iconic of Santa Monica are interspersed on the sales floor, from a blinking lit arrow reclaimed from a carnival to match the Ferris wheels, to the artwork on the walls; even the doors of the bathroom stalls show beach-goers frolicking in the Pacific surf.

Both the artistic and space-conscious touches are what store manager Rhonda Lantz-Teichert call "flirtatious" and "whimsical," and allow innovative use for on-site stock storage as well as a way to "animate" the environment, notes Charles Anderson, Director of Stores.

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What was formerly a somewhat uninspired retail "box" is now infused with light, bold color, quirky creative touches, and of course all the merchandise you expect to see at a department store like Bloomingdale's, though surely fashionistas will take note of their varied selection from head (sunglasses, natch) to toe (shoes, shoes, shoes!). Regardless of your personal style, on the other side of these windows there's lots to shop for with your eyes...and if you're so inclined, your wallet.

Bloomingdale's at Santa Monica Place opens August 6th.