I have previously mentioned the way that SHKP, Swire and other developers have started to be much more, er, proactive in dealing with their retail tenants. Rents are going up and in some cases retailers are being forced to move (the most famous example being Swire’s decision not to offer M&S a new lease for their Pacific Place store).
Now comes the news that HMV is closing its only NT store, the one in New Town Plaza (the huge and rather unwelcoming mall in lovely Shatin). This is because the landlords (SHKP) decided that the space should be occupied by more clothing outlets (and you really never can have enough of them) and proposed that HMV move to a higher floor. They seem not to have been keen on this idea.
As HMV move out, CitySuper are moving in (to another location in the same mall). I have previously written about the phenomenon of expat supermarkets in Hong Kong, most recently when the ParknShop in Kowloon Tong turned into ‘Taste’ – but I had thought that we poor folk in the New Territories would have to settle for that.
Seems not... CitySuper’s owners obviously believe that there is a market for their highly priced delicacies in the New Territories. I believe their primary target are the Japanese, but I’m sure gweilos and locals are also welcome, and I suppose that the Sha Tin/Tai Po area has enough upmarket residential developments to justify that decision.