Macy's landmark store in Third and Pine streets in downtown Seattle will close in February next year, the company confirmed Saturday, ending a long history of retail and holiday tradition as its online rival Amazon has continued to grow under their own roof.
The announcement of the store's upcoming closure came a day after employees were told of the decision by the longtime retailer, who took over the block-long building at 300 Pine Street from The Bon Marché in 2003. The closure ends a 90-year run of retail on it instead.
"After careful consideration, Macy's, Inc. has decided to sell Downtown Seattle Macy's building," said Blair Rosenberg, Macy's director of communications, in a statement. Rosenberg's statement did not explain the reasons behind the decision to sell.
Clearance sales will begin in January 2020. The store will close in late February.
“The decision to close a store is always difficult, and we look forward to continuing to serve our customers at nearby Macy's Bellevue Square, Alderwood, Southcenter and Redmond Furniture Gallery, and online at macys.com , "said Rosenberg.
The downtown store will continue to operate through the Holiday 201[ads1]9 season, Rosenberg said. However, the 161-foot-tall Macy star that is lit annually to mark the start of the Seattle holiday will shine. The star needs repair , said Rosenberg.
"That said, we are pleased that the new property owner has committed to show a reimagined star for the Seattle community to enjoy the beginning of 2020," Rosenberg said. was not immediately clear if Rosenberg referred to Starwood Capital Group, the Connecticut-based firm that owns the majority of the building.
The store still plans to "call in the Seattle holiday" November 29 with the 29th annual Macy's 39; s Holiday Parade and Fireworks.
"We look forward to working with the Downtown Seattle Association to transfer these beloved traditions," Rosenberg said.
Store employees first learned of the closure Friday morning in a regular staff meeting. One employee present said people were "terrible. I mean, their jobs are gone, and there's not much retailing anymore. ”
The building was declared a historic landmark in 1988, and until 2003 it became known as the Bon Marché department store, owned by Federated Department Shops. In 2003, it changed its name to Bon-Macy's; then in 2005 to Macy's. In 2007, the Federated Department Store changed its name to Macy's Incorporated.
Starwood purchased four floors in the eight-story building for $ 65 million in 2015 and added two more floors in 2017, leaving Macy's # 2 lower floors and basement. The company declined to comment on Macy's closure.
Two years ago, Amazon announced that it was leasing the top six floors of the building. The leased space – 312,000 square feet – is enough to have around 1,500 employees.
The online store giant now occupies 47 office buildings in Seattle, covering 11.5 million square feet. It also plans to lease or build around 2 million square feet of office space in Bellevue.