Fashion Valley to Add, Expand Pricey Stores

New stores expected to thrive in San Diego


Just in time for the holidays, Fashion Valley Mall will be adding three new stores to its mall in Mission Valley.

The new, high-end stores include Ted Baker, a British clothing retailer; OMEGA, a Swiss watch retailer; and In+Add-Minus, a contemporary fashion label, a mall representative told the Feast.

The mall in Mission Valley will also house large expansions of Burberry and a two-story Forever 21 in the space where the Saks Fifth Ave. department store used to be.

Some shoppers may be critical of the addition, with consumers generally spending less in the post-recession slump. However, USD economist Alan Gin says there’s a reason why the mall added stores that sell expensive items.

“Actually I think these stores will do very well,” Gin said. “It turns out that high-end stores have held up well during this downturn.”

For example, Tiffany and Co. reported that its income grew 30 percent in the second quarter across all regions. The jeweler also raised its full-year profit forecast because of the better-than-expected results, according to an Associated Press article.

“People at the high end of the income distribution are doing okay, and they can afford these stores,” Gin said. “The share of income going to the top 1 percent of our population is now at the highest percentage since the 1920s.”

Shoppers in the lower and middle end of the income distribution probably won’t be visiting these stores much anyway, he added. The stores would have to feature enough sales to attract these customers.

Adding stores like the ones that will appear in Fashion Valley next month may be a small help to economic recovery, but not enough to end the threat of a double-dip recession. Gin expects that the retail industry will have to follow a recovery. 

“It’s going to take the economy doing better. We need employment in other areas to get people to spend money on clothes.”

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