Gauteng Business News

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RETAIL: Newcomer Morningside Shopping Centre Wins Multiple Awards


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Morningside Shopping Centre has garnered an impressive collection of top industry awards this year – setting it apart as a shopping centre of distinction, with an offering that caters uniquely for its many loyal shoppers.

The stylish shopping centre’s most recent achievement is the prestigious Retail Design and Development Spectrum Award - the highest accolade in the retail property industry, an initiative by the South African Council of Shopping Centres. This is yet another tribute to the centre's architects, at MDS Architecture and developers, Grapnel Property Group (PTY) Ltd and Flanagan and Gerard Property Development and Investment.

This bespoke shopping centre has achieved big things.

The Spectrum Award comes hot on the heels of other top industry awards, including the SAPOA Innovative Excellence in Property Development Awards 2010, in the retail development category, where Morningside Shopping Centre's design was lauded as outstanding.

These top awards have rounded off an already impressive bouquet of commendations earned by Morningside Shopping Centre this year. Amongst them a bounty of three regional Special Star Awards which recognise excellence and innovation. This includes the top Retail Design and Development Award for South African shopping centres under 25,000sqm for Morningside Shopping Centre.

MDS Architecture is only of the oldest architectural firms in South Africa, renowned for design excellence. The firm’s portfolio spans regional commercial buildings, mixed use developments, residential buildings, regional and neighbourhood shopping centres and casino/entertainment and hotel resorts, both in South Africa and abroad.

Flanagan and Gerard are responsible for the development of some of the country’s most successful shopping malls including Vaal Mall, Paarl Mall, Lakeside Mall in Benoni and Highveld Mall in eMalahleni. They are currently developing, in partnership, the super-regional Mall of the North in Polokwane.

The Grapnel Property Group team are developers, investors and asset managers and were the visionaries behind South Africa’s first specialised property fund focused on hotel and leisure properties, Hospitality Property Fund. Prior to that, Grapnel was the fund and asset manager for Sycom Property Fund for 15 years. They are developers of predominantly commercial office and retail space with current investments in offices in Melrose Estate, Cadbury and Ericsson head offices in Woodmead and a stake in Paarl Mall, which was developed in conjunction with F and G. Grapnel has also undertaken numerous refurbishment and extensions as Hospitality Property Fund’s development managers amongst their achievements.

This dynamic team was equipped with a unique and precise vision for the concept of Morningside Shopping Centre together with the rigorous research which underpinned its creation.

“Our strategy was geared to creating a AAA grade retail centre with a exceptional tenant mix designed to provide convenient, quality lifestyle retail to the immediate trade area, which includes some of South Africa’s wealthiest suburbs”, explains Patrick Flanagan of Flanagan and Gerard.

MDS was tasked with creating an aesthetically outstanding centre to house this hand-picked mix of tenants. “The result was inspired by clean lines expressing simple elegance and a pallet comprising shades of white, creating a timeless and classic design,” notes John Williamson of MDS Architecture.

Chris Fleming of Grapnel explains: “We set out to build and establish a uniquely distinct shopping centre and shopping experience. We are honoured with the many accolades, particularly against the backdrop of a tough and very competitive industry, where standards are already extremely high”

Most importantly, points out Flanagan, is that the concept and design of a shopping centre results in its ongoing successful trade.

“We are pleased with the success of the centre as a property asset. The extensive planning which served as the foundation for Morningside Shopping Centres has resulted in a vibrant, flourishing and relevant retail asset. In fact, many of our tenants are themselves established as popular award-winning traders and restaurateurs,” says Flanagan.

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