Retail vacancies are rising in downtown Buenos Aires, as consumer spending slows and more small businesses choose not to renew their leases, according to Alfredo Sainz of La Nacion.
Sainz says “For Rent” signs are spreading like a virus especially in popular pedestrian corridors like Florida and Lavalle, and the 30-block area of Recoleta bordered by Alvear, Callao, Cerrito and Santa Fe where Se Alquila signs appear in 49 storefronts. On individual blocks like Uruguay 1200 and Montevideo 1700, there are at least 3 vacancies per block, writes Sainz.
Around the corner in a five-block stretch of Alvear Avenue, there are 4 high-profile vacancies left when major international retail brands like Polo Ralph Lauren and Louis Vuitton closed their doors last year. The former Escada location made news late last year when word spread that it would be reincarnated as a Chinese supermarket
Vacancies are even more evident on Santa Fe between Callao and the Plaza San Martin and on Calle Florida where 14 storefronts have For Rent signs and another 6 have Going Out of Business signs. According to Colliers International, average retail rent fell 12.8% last year on Calle Florida to US$88.9 per square meter. In the process, Sao Paulo’s Oscar Freire (US$109 per m2) replaced Florida as the most expensive retail corridor in Latin America.
With retail prices coming down, Sainz says more banks and international clothing companies are opting to purchase well-located retail locations rather than continue renting retail space in Microcentro and Recoleta. (Full Story in Spanish)
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