Riverchase Galleria Announces Von Maur Department Store

CHICAGO, IL | MAR 12, 2012–Riverchase Galleria today announced the addition of Von Maur department store to its signature retail line-up. Alabama’s number one shopping destination located in the city of Hoover, Riverchase Galleria also unveiled plans to refresh the property through expansive updates, modernizing and enhancing both the interior and exterior of the property. Scheduled to begin in 2012 and be completed in 2013, other improvements include: relocation and upgrade of Center Court elevators to enhance sight-lines and provide better customer service; installation of aesthetic architectural elements including pendant fixtures and “sails” with accent lighting throughout Center Court; upgrade and modernizing mall entrances and pedestrian bridge entrances; parking deck improvements; and the expansion of Center Court restrooms. The new landscaping and way-finding signage will be indigenous and complementary of the surrounding Riverchase and Hoover communities.

“The proposed redevelopment and refresh of the center is critical to the success of the center,” Tom Martin, the Galleria’s senior general manager, said in a prepared statement. “With the addition of Von Maur, the reputation and popularity of the Galleria is only further solidified as a premier shopping, dining and entertainment destination.” Alabama’s first Von Maur will open to Riverchase Galleria’s new refreshed look in 2013. The 187,000-square-foot store is located in the eight story high glass atrium at center court under the world’s largest skylight. It will be the Galleria’s fifth department store with Macy’s Sears, JCPenney and Belk. Von Maur will join other soon-to-open retailers such as Jared Jewelry and Earth Fare.

Earth Fare has 21 locations in six states and offers ready-to-go meal options, local and organic fruits and produce, and full-service meat, poultry and seafood departments.

Von Maur is a family-owned department store based in Davenport, Iowa, and has grown to a 27-location chain with department stores in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Georgia and now Alabama. Known for creating an enjoyable and unique shopping experience, Von Maur’s merchandise selection includes national brands as well as unique specialty labels. Von Maur also offers exclusive amenities to its shoppers, such as a no interest, no fee credit card, free shipping and free gift wrapping year-round, and an in-store pianist during business hours.

Riverchase Galleria is one of America’s most distinct shopping experiences. The 1.5-million-square-foot mall is located in Hoover, Alabama, south of downtown Birmingham and draws from a customer-base of more than 40,000 shoppers within a 10-mile radius. Riverchase Galleria’s retail line-up includes retailers such as Sephora, LOFT, Banana Republic, Chico’s, Coach, The Limited, J.Jill, Bare Escentuals, White House/Black Market, Godiva, Brighton Collectibles, Hollister and Alabama’s only Lego store. Riverchase Galleria is a joint venture between General Growth Properties and Montgomery, Alabama-based Jim Wilson & Associates. The property opened in February 1986 and recently celebrated its 26th anniversary. “After being involved with the Galleria since the early 1980’s, our family and our company, together with General Growth Properties, are ready to create new opportunities for the retail portion of the Galleria with this redevelopment project that includes an outstanding new department store, Von Maur,” said Will Wilson, President, Jim Wilson & Associates. “These improvements, joined by The Wynfrey Hotel as it becomes a part of the Hyatt Regency family of hotels, will further enhance this outstanding asset.” The Von Maur and redevelopment announcement comes on the heels of the recent announcement of the multi-million dollar makeover of what will become the Hyatt Regency Birmingham-The Wynfrey Hotel. The hotel renovation will commence in the fall of 2012 and be completed by March 2013. The hotel will receive substantial upgrades including an enhanced exterior facade, renovation of all public areas, fitness center, outdoor swimming pool and meeting space. The guest rooms will be fully refurbished with upgraded bedding and comprehensive soft and case goods package.

Jim Wilson & Associates, LLC (JWA), based in Montgomery, Ala., is a privately owned real estate company specializing in shopping centers, residential real estate investments, offices, condominiums, hotels and mixed-use developments. With over three decades of real estate experience, JWA has developed in excess of 21 million square feet of shopping center space. JWA developed the Riverchase Galleria, including The Wynfrey Hotel and Galleria Tower, which initially opened in 1986 and continues its involvement in all aspects of this marquis project. The company’s development portfolio includes residential communities and condominium residences, mixed-use developments, Class A office buildings and hotel and country club assets. For additional information about JWA, visit www.jwamalls.com.

GGP is the second largest shopping center owner in the United States. GGP has ownership and management interests in 136 regional and super regional shopping malls in 41 states comprising approximately 140 million square feet. A publicly traded real estate investment trust, GGP is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GGP. For more information, please visit www.GGP.com.

This news release is a joint release from GGP and Jim Wilson & Associates.