Build-A-Bear seeks a bigger audience in tourist areas

Build-A-Bear Workshop is building a bigger presence in tourist spots from the St. Louis Science Center to Walt Disney World to next to the Empire State Building. In a push to combat falling mall traffic, the retailer has also launched shops on 25 Carnival cruise ships and it will also open holiday shops in five Bass Pro stores. Read the St. Louis Post-Dispatch story here

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American Eagle unveils a new store format

American Eagle Outfitters will debut a new retail concept called AE Studio in New York City, according to Women’s Wear Daily. The new store’s features will include a Jeans Gallery, free laundry facility for full-time students, a space for capsule collections from emerging designers and artists and fitting rooms equipped with concierge iPads.

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Chipotle to slow unit growth, focus on fundamentals

Chipotle Mexican Grill will open fewer new restaurants next year as it focuses on the fundamentals at existing locations. The chain, which reported lower-than-expected quarterly same-store sales, also said it will raise prices around 5% at 900 restaurants next month. Read the Reuters story here

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Lord & Taylor to sell N.Y. flagship, shrink store size

The Lord & Taylor flagship in New York City will become the new headquarters of office space leasing company WeWork, which will buy the 676,000-square-foot building as part of a joint venture. Lord & Taylor will lease back the bottom floors to create a downsized version of its department store. Read The New York Times story here

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Dior debuts 2nd North American boutique in Chicago

Christian Dior opened its new Chicago flagship recently, three years after announcing plans for the shop, according to Women’s Wear Daily. The two-story, 3,300-square-foot space in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood is the 70-year-old designer brand’s second North American boutique.

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Century 21 tries on a new designer discount format

Discount department store Century 21 Stores in New York City will debut a new in-store shop dubbed Next Century, with a more polished atmosphere and a lineup of designer goods. The shop, with a separate entrance from the main store, also features amenities including a nail art bar and coffee and tea bar. Read The New York Times story here

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Turning old shipping containers into new restaurants

Mersea, a new eatery slated to open on San Francisco’s Treasure Island this year, will be constructed entirely from recycled shipping containers. Restaurants made from shipping containers are popping up around the country, and the concept made sense for Mersea because it will sit on a man-made island where a more permanent brick-and-mortar structure wouldn’t work. Read the Restaurant Hospitality online story here

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Pei Wei starts a new chapter in a new city

Fast-casual chain Pei Wei Asian Diner moved its headquarters to Irving, Texas, when it separated from its sibling brand, Arizona-based P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, with plans to revamp the brand and its operations. Read the QSR story here

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Red Robin tries on delivery, catering concept in Chicago

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers has created a delivery-only concept called Red Robin Express on Chicago’s Michigan Avenue. The test concept will feature several of the chain’s popular menu items and, in addition to direct delivery, the location will offer catering services and third-party delivery through providers such as DoorDash and Amazon. Read the Nation’s Restaurant News story here

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IHG considers adding soft brand

InterContinental Hotels Group is considering the addition of a soft collection to its brand portfolio. The company reported a 2.3% uptick in revenue per available room for the third quarter. Read the Hotel News Now story here

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