Luxury fashion store Saks Off 5th to be replaced by a luxury ... Walgreens?


The soon-to-close Saks Off 5th store in downtown Minneapolis will be replaced by a Walgreens, but not as we know it.

The Illinois-based drugstore chain will take on 38,000 of the 50,000 square feet vacated by Saks, the Star Tribune reports, using the first floor and part of the second, fronting on to Nicollet Mall and South Seventh Street.

But the new store will not be a typical Walgreens, with spokesman Phil Caruso telling the Star Tribune the space will be filled with a "higher-end, marquee" store format.

Walgreens' marquee shops are a smaller-version of the "flagship" stores that have opened in cities such as Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles in recent years as the firm looks to expand its appeal to upmarket shoppers.

These stores have gained attention for their upscale offering, selling freshly-rolled sushi, juice bars and an extensive wine selection, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The Business Journal says the store in downtown Minneapolis will be a smaller version of the flagship, but should still offer "fresh foods, wine, groceries and enhanced beauty product offerings."

Walgreens is expected to only fill 23,000 square feet of space initially, according to the Business Journal, about twice the size of a traditional Walgreens.

Saks Off 5th will close on Jan. 31, with the loss of 50 jobs. The existing Walgreens on Nicollet Mall is also expected to close when the new store opens.

The remaining 12,000 square feet of space in the Saks unit will be remodeled for retail use and should be ready by July 2015, new building owners United Properties told the Star Tribune.

'Strong start' for holiday shopping season

There is good news for retailers across the country, as the holiday shopping season has got off to a "strong start", according to a survey by MasterCard.

Retail sales rose by 2.3 percent in November, the Pioneer Press reports, with hotel, restaurant and hardware sales driving the increase. The rise would have been 3.6 percent, were it not for the drop in gas sales resulting from plummeting oil prices.

It follows what appeared to be a strong Thanksgiving weekend for retailers in the Twin Cities, with 280,000 people passing through the doors of the Mall of America on Thanksgiving evening and Black Friday alone, while Target and Best Buy reported a surge in online sales.

The MasterCard survey found that total sales over the holiday weekend across the country rose 0.9 percent, and expects total retail sales over the Christmas period to rise 5.5 percent, higher than earlier forecasts, the Pioneer Press notes.

Next Up

Mats Zuccarello

Wild dominate Coyotes with 3-goal first period

The Wild rebounded after getting swept in Vegas.

Guy Fieri

MN brewpub to make 2nd appearance on 'Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives'

In other words, Guy Fieri is returning to the Twin Cities.

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

St. Cloud teen charged with raping girl in high school bathroom

Police say it happened during a late 2019 basketball game.


Reports: 'Miracle on Ice' star Mark Pavelich found dead at treatment facility

The 63-year-old had been ordered to undergo psychiatric care.

hennepin county government center fencing minneapolis chauvin

Minneapolis, Hennepin County spending $1M on barricades, fencing for Chauvin trial

Minneapolis hopes to be reimbursed for fortification costs by the state if it passes the proposed SAFE Account.

police lights

Police: 3 Minnesotans made fake report to divert SD police away drug investigation

Three people from Detroit Lakes are facing charges, with two of the men involved accused of making a false report of gunmen entering a local business.

Drive-up vaccine

HealthPartners opens drive-up COVID vaccine site

The healthcare provider says it's the first drive-up vaccination site in the state.

derek chauvin

Appeals court: Judge must reconsider third-degree murder charge against Chauvin

The appeals court's recent decision on a different officer-involved shooting case is precedent, it said.

covid-19, vaccine

New data reveals Minnesotans getting COVID vaccines are disproportionately white

The Minnesota Department of Health revealed race and ethnicity vaccine data on Friday.