The new St Davids's 2 shopping centre has paved the way for a whole host of new and exciting brands to the capital making the shopping experience for us fashionistas more versatile and exuberant than ever before.
When I first moved to Cardiff from London, 6 years ago, I was extremely disappointed by not only the array of shops available to me but also the size of them. My fashion appetite was hungry and I felt I was constantly venturing back to the capital city for a proper fashion fix. However, not long after I moved to Cardiff, Topshop launched its flagship store in Wales and slowly other shops followed suit. However, what the St Davids 2 centre has brought to Cardiff is a whole new kettle of fish, enticing shoppers from around Wales and even across the English border, drawing a total of more than 75 million visitors since opening two years ago.
The excitement mounted for me when Cult, Kurt Geiger, Radley, Kath Kidson, Links of London, All Saints, Reiss and most recently, Mango came to town, increasing the variety and diversity of shops for all budgets.
Cult was a fantastic new store for the Cardiff shopper as it offered the more relaxed fashionista an urban, edgy, American street style, dominated by the Superdry brand, which most people now own at least one item from. All Saints, is a uber cool, urban, street brand, offering high-end, fashionable clothing for the rock chic and more edgy dresser. Still a shop I would love to be able to afford to go in more often but it is still a real treat to purchase something from in store. Then you have Kurt Geiger and Reiss for the more aspirational shopper, offering high end fashionable and chic dresses and shoes.
As a true fashionista who spends most weekends exploring and wandering the shops in the St Davids centre, I would say that the new shopping centre has really put Cardiff on the shopping map in the UK, making it one of the most exciting and diverse places to shop in the UK. All we need now is a Selfridges or Harvey Nichols to complete it.
Here are a few facts courtesy of St Davids 2 PR agency, Grayling:
· St David’s was the biggest shopping centre to open in Europe in 2009 with more than 120 new stores now open – and more to come
· The pinnacle of £675m investment by St David’s Partnership – a joint venture between Land Securities and Capital Shopping Centres
· 1.4m sq ft of retail space in the heart of Cardiff: more than a third of Cardiff’s retail offering
· A mix of designer names on The Hayes including Hugo Boss, Radley and Links of London with high street brands in Grand Arcade such as Cult, Warehouse, Lakeland
· Anchored by the biggest John Lewis outside of London and featuring modernised department stores Debenhams and Marks & Spencer
· 2,500 car parking spaces open 24 hours, with prices as low as £2 after 5pm
· Late night shopping every weekday until 8pm
· Within one month of opening, boosted Cardiff up five rankings to 6th in the UK’s top shopping destinations – up five places(Source: Experian)
· Late night dining at Eastside and out on The Hayes with restaurants including Ruby Tuesday, Jamie’s Italian, TGI Fridays and Yo! Sushi