In June the portfolio of properties managed by Balmain Property Management was increased by the addition of Solaris Centre – a modern shopping centre situated in near to both the Old Town and the train station in Opole. The shopping centre, which was opened in 2009, has a lettable space of over 18,000 sqm. Its offer includes many international and Polish brands, such as Delikatesy Alma, C&A, CCC, RTV EURO AGD, Zara, Bershka, Stradivarius, Intersport, Reserved, Cropp, New Yorker, Rossmann, Deni Cler and Monnar. Rockcastle purchased Solaris Centre in March 2015.
“Solaris Centre is a very important property in our Polish portfolio. Therefore, we tried to choose a company with a team which, in their everyday work, demonstrates professionalism, commitment, creativity and market experience in managing projects that are in the process of extension,” said Marek Noetzel, Retail Director at Rockcastle. “Balmain offers all these elements, which convinced us that we are making the right choice.”
The Balmain Property Management team will be responsible for all aspects of the property management of the asset, including technical and financial matters. Balmain Property Management will also support of the commercialization of the property and undertake marketing and PR, as well tenants relations.
Balmain team will use the Coldis tailored made system, which is unique in the Polish market. The system will provide Rockcastle with a very flexible and adaptable solution to all aspects of the information management for Solaris.
The plans also include the significant extension and modernization of the Solaris Centre, which will also include the construction of a two-storey underground car park with 300 parking spaces, the reconstruction and optimization of the road system around Plac Kopernika and the development of public space in front of the new part of the centre.
The investment, the value of which is around 100 million PLN, is being implemented in a PPP format (a public-private partnership) with the City of Opole. The design work was commissioned to JSK Architekci – this studio originally designed the Solaris Centre. The expansion encompasses an additional 9,000 sqm of GLA, as well as the renewal and renovation of the existing gallery. The additional space will enable the expansion of the centre’s fashion offering, the introduction of new anchor tenants and the provision of space to the existing brands for introducing new concepts that require a larger floor space. Major changes will also take place in the entertainment and catering offering, with the extension plans including the introduction of a fitness operator and the creation of a modern foodcourt.
Tim Rylance, Director of the Balmain Group, summed up the tender: “As a business we always strive to go beyond conventional thinking about management as we look at every facility from the perspective of the owner as the Balmain Group itself owns, manages, leases and develops many Polish properties. Our team participated in many successful value enhancement projects over our 13 years active in Poland. Maintaining and operating a property whilst undertaking modernization, extension, re-commercialization or rebranding is one of the largest challenges of modern property management and we are both pleased and grateful that Rockcastle have recognised this.”