Lillywhites shop in London’s Piccadilly Circus on the market
today Dec 6, 2019
The Central London store has been Lillywhites’ best-known location since 1925.
Once considered a fine sports store, it was in Lillywhites where George VI shopped for his coronation slippers. But since Sports Direct acquired the brand from Jerónimo Martins for £28.5m in the mid 90s, the sporting emporium went from a glorious department store to a cut-price shop not dissimilar to Sports Direct.
Lillywhites has traded there for almost 100 years, but the lease for the ornate building has now been put on the market as its landlord, Criterion Capital, conducts rent review talks, reported The Guardian.
Property experts have said the lease could be as much as £4 million a year, a staggering sum that would, however, give its occupier a prime spot on Lower Regent Street.
And the area is undergoing redevelopment, with Criterion repurposing the nearby Trocadero and the new St James’s development bringing back a host of luxury brands from Assos Smeg.
But it remains to be seen whether the building will attract significant attention, particularly at a time when department stores are struggling and most retailers are downsizing.
Lillywhites has two other stores in the UK and three in Kuwait.
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