The retail landscape in Ottawa is changing. Not too long ago, E and I or my girlfriends and I would go away to Montreal to do some shopping and dining, It would always involve a stop at the famed Ste. Catherines Street, at the heart of downtown Montreal, which boasts rows upon rows of fashion brands and designer boutiques. We would make an entire weekend out of it and it would, as always, include a visit to Simon’s.
N.B.: Stay tuned ’till the end for a fabulous Simons event! YOU may WIN prizes!!!
Fast forward to a few years, Ottawa has not been the home to global retail giants, mostly American, but still global in reach. Now, things has changed. The fashion industry is no longer what it was once and everything moves in a rapid pace. When the very first H&M open so such massive fanfare, it was only a matter of minutes that the others would come rushing in.
And so they did. Despite some unfortunate set backs such as the departure of Target from Canada (it left as quickly as it came to the True North), the closures of several long-time Canadian retailers such as Jacob and soon, Smart Set and locally, the closing shop of some boutique stores and retail stores in Ottawa, they kept coming – big international brands like Tiffany’s, Kate Spade, Stuart Weitzman and more!
One of them is Canadian – the Quebec retail giant Simons.
Founded in 1840, Simons have the greatest respect for the diversity of life and all its beauty. Their mission: to convey their passion for fashion where they look after their customers by offering them a unique, pleasant, and friendly environment. As the company’s 10th store in Canada, Simon’s finally came to the National Capital Region in August 2015 to serve the Ottawa – Gatineau region in Les Promenades Gatineau, just in time for the shopping centre’s complete mall redevelopment. The 80,000 square foot location will be centrally located on the north side of the (now very good looking) Les Promenades shopping centre along Maloney Boulevard West, on the same side as the Archambault, Costco and Forever 21.
Evidently, this is a very exciting news for the NCR as not only is the SIMONS opening perfectly timed for the Back-to-School Shopping rush, a second store in the Rideau Centre is also in the works.
COOL AND EDGY DESIGN OF THE STORE
With a solid competition as the newly opened NORDSTROM in Ottawa, Simon’s plans to focus on serving the customers and serving them really well. Having had the pleasure of meeting current CEO Peter Simons during the exclusive Media Blogger Tour, it’s easy to to see the familial commitment and devotion that has been in the vein of this Quebec Shopping Institution. Passed down from generations, Mr. Simons is keen on not only preserving but growing the family legacy by staying true to the Simons credo: serving loyal customers from the area as well as introducing new customers to unique shopping concept that mixes distinctive merchandise with compelling store environments.
Compelling it indeed was. We had the privilege of viewing the new store before it officially opened to the public and it was a delight to see renowned firm Lemay Michaud’s architecture and design of the new store. Staying on brand, the whole concept is inspired by fabric, the exterior reveals a Prince of Wales pattern – a nod to the retailer’s Scottish heritage – against clean, white precast concrete, complete with a thread of Simons’ green. To convey a very inviting atmosphere, a square structure of polished glass protrudes from the building to create an illuminated canopy visible from the boulevard, welcoming shoppers to the world of Simons.
And once inside, you will be a full view of Morphodynamique, a two-piece sculpture of aluminum mesh that appears to spill down, out of the central skylight. Especially created for Simons by the Quebec-born Brooklyn-based artist Julie Tremblay, the piece made of metres and metres of mesh, is a study of movement and that’s exactly what it seems to do.
A HUGE COLLECTION OF DESIGNER LABELS RIGHT HERE IN THE CAPITAL
Aside from the pleasing interiors and the inviting feel, the home section and fashion selection does not disappoint. With a mix of high and low fashion, you can shop for inexpensive bargains as well as discover the world of designers at Simons with Jean Paul Gaultier, Christopher Kane, Carven, Chloé, Jonathan Saunders, Stella McCartney, Vanessa Bruno, Philippe Dubuc, Paul Smith, Moncler, Missoni, and many more.
Drawing inspiration from travel and discoveries, Simons‘s house brands like #TWIK are urban, cutting-edge, hi-tech, elegant, sporty, businesslike, and seductive. They are style leaders, fashion forerunners and trendsetters. They are perfect for all occasions and all styles. They are available exclusively at SIMONS.
CENTURY-OLD CANADIAN VALUES THAT FOCUSES ON CUSTOMERS
Named after the family matriarch, Ève is an entirely new French bistro concept at Les Promenades location. A Simons owned and operated café inspired by Simons family’s French-Canadian roots, the menu will include fresh and ubiquitous French items like Montreal-style bagels, French onion soup, etc. The new French Diner can be accessed from the store or the parking lot, a fabulous idea when you need to take a break from your shopping spree.
Oh and before we forget… Come celebrate the opening of the new Simons store at Les Promenades Gatineau! Gifts & surprises await you! This is a collaboration with Simons and LOU LOU Magazine! The first 500 customers to arrive* will receive a $50 gift card WITH ANY PURCHASE. Plus, YOU COULD WIN a gift card to create your own take on the “7 Days of Simons Looks” worn by Maripier Morin.
With such fierce competition in the retail industry, it’s encouraging to see a true Canadian fashion institution holding its place firmly in the Ottawa fashion landscape. Needless to say, SIMONS will save a tremendous amount of time for you and for my friends and I as we no longer have to go all the way to Montreal for the latest shopping find. Simons is now right here in our own backyard and it turns out, it has something for everyone!
Bienvenue chez nous Simons!
LEARN MORE ABOUT SIMONS
Simons was founded in 1840 by John Simons as a dry goods store in Quebec City. Since then, the company has built its reputation on being passionate about fashion. Simons is now led by brothers Peter and Richard Simons, who carry on the brand’s commitment to cultivating creativity and building meaningful relationships with staff, partners, as well as customers. Simons offers an extensive and very fashion-forward collection of its own exclusive and innovative private label brands for men and women, complimented by a selection of national brands and an edited collection of international designers, making it well known for its exceptional selection of merchandise for everyone. Simons also carries home fashions for the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen.
For more summer fashion as well as what to do, where to go and what to wear, follow @20YS on Twitter & @20YS on Instagram today. For behind the scenes from our shopping adventure and upcoming posts and travel tips on #EUROTRIP2015, follow @20YS and on Twitter, Pinterest and @20YS on Instagram.