The Yomiuri ShimbunGinza Six, one of the largest commercial complexes in Tokyo’s Ginza district, is scheduled to open on Thursday. Companies including J. Front Retailing Co., the operator of the Daimaru and Matsuzakaya department stores, and Mori Building Co. jointly developed the facility at Ginza’s 6-chome block, investing about ¥86 billion.
The image of Ginza — one of the most upmarket areas in the nation — has been evolving, shifting away from department stores and moving toward commercial facilities housing mainly luxury brand outlets.
Opened to the media on Friday prior to its debut, Ginza Six has a sales space of about 47,000 square meters, exceeding those of the neighboring Ginza Mitsukoshi and Matsuya Ginza department stores. Customers can enjoy a sense of space thanks to the open ceiling structure.
A total of 241 outlets, mainly overseas luxury brands including Christian Dior of France and Fendi of Italy, will operate in the complex. Ginza Six is estimated to draw 20 million customers and ¥60 billion in sales annually.
The complex was built where former Matsuzakaya Ginza — which boasted about 90 years of history — and other stores were once located. Rather than buying and selling goods like a department store, Ginza Six operates on the rent from the outlets in an effort to achieve more stable management. J. Front Retailing President Ryoichi Yamamoto said, “The same business model used in the past can’t be applied forever.”
Mitsukoshi and other department stores attracted many customers to the Ginza district since before World War II and through the high economic growth period. However, the growing diversification of apparel shops and popularity of online shopping have caused department stores in the district to struggle in terms of sales, despite their prestigious location.
Other commercial facilities also mainly house outlets. They include Tokyu Plaza Ginza and Marronnier Gate Ginza — a renovation of Printemps Ginza that opened in March.
Whether Ginza can be further revitalized through competition among facilities, including department stores, remains a focus of attention.
Ginza Six will attract foreign tourists as well as trigger consumption, Mori Building President Shingo Tsuji said.
Taking part in its first redevelopment project in the Ginza district, Mori Building developed the former site of Matsuzakaya Ginza and an adjacent city block in an integrated manner. “This is one of the largest redevelopment projects in the history of Ginza. It will be a new symbol of Ginza,” Tsuji said in an interview with The Yomiuri Shimbun.
In addition to a noh theater and a rooftop garden, the complex can serve as a base of operations in the event of a disaster. “We applied the know-how we acquired in the management of Roppongi Hills [to the project],” Tsuji said.Speech