CHESTERFIELD, Mo. (KSDK) - It's been nearly a year since two outlet malls opened in the Chesterfield Valley, much to the delight of bargain shoppers from across the St. Louis region.
"I like to think there's some synergy there," says Taubman Prestige Outlets General Manager Colleen O'Neill.
We were there when Taubman Prestige Outlets opened, and there are noticeably fewer shoppers here now than there were then. Still, Colleen O'Neill says stores here are doing business, and things are looking up thanks to popular retailers like Coach, H&M, and Foot Locker coming in.
"It's a great testament to the property itself. And we're going to continue that momentum. We're very committed to this community, and the leasing efforts have been very strong."
To many observers, the St. Louis Premium Outlets look to be ahead in the mall war.
"Things are going really well. Better than we expected. We're 100-percent leased," says Premium Outlets General Manager Brian Voyles. "We can really tell how well we're doing by the response we're getting from the shoppers. We're very busy every single day and things are going excellent."
But analyst Juli Niemann with Smith Moore and Company says history suggests that will not last long at all.
"Typically you hit a peak in about four to five years and then the descent begins. This has happened with every mall in St. Louis. Not one has been excluded," Niemann said.
Colleen O'neill says despite predictions that say otherwise, having stores like Polo and Banana Republic already at Taubman, plus the new additions on the way should encourage confidence in her mall.
"I'm going to say we're here to stay. our leasing is strong. and our retailers are happy. And we're going to continue what we've built and there's going to be more to come."
We're told H&M's Chesterfield Mall location will stay open, which is good news for a mall that's seen several mainstays bolt in recent months.