THE FOUR FOOD GROUPS 2007-01-01 Staff Writer <strong><bold>RETAIL</bold><br /> <bold>King Khan</bold></strong><br /> Khan Market, an upscale retail area in New Delhi, has always been known as a virtual oasis of Western-style stores and restaurants. Nestled wi

King Khan

Khan Market, an upscale retail area in New Delhi, has always been known as a virtual oasis of Western-style stores and restaurants. Nestled within one of the city’s most prestigious residential areas, the plaza contains showrooms for such brands as Nike, Reebok, Benetton and Goodearth, as well as a McDonalds, Barista and Bandhej.

Now a new report from Cushman & Wakefield ranking the most expensive retail streets in the world has listed the market as the biggest riser on the list. In the new report, entitled “Main Streets Across the World 2007,” Khan Market jumped from 24th to 16th place among the world’s most costly retail streets. The top of the list saw little change, with New York’s Fifth Avenue ranking number one and Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay ranking number two.

Khan Market ranked as the most expensive retail destination in India, with rentals of Rs 950 ($24) per square foot per month in the second quarter. It witnessed an annual growth of 35.7 per cent over the same period last year. The report concluded that, “Khan Market is the biggest riser in the ranking of the world’s most expensive shopping locations in terms of retail rents.”

Taking into account all of the world’s shopping locations – not just the most expensive – Delhi’s Connaught Place was the biggest gainer in Asia, and globally its growth was only beat by Chicago’s East Oak Street, with an annual growth of 87.5 percent.

Hola, Travelodge

The British hotel chain Travelodge says it will make its foray into Spain, investing €1 billion in 100 hotels by 2020. The plan would be the first major push into a non-UK and Ireland market for Travelodge, and would target Madrid, Barcelona, and Valencia initially before moving on to other areas. So far the company has started with two hotels in Madrid and one in Barcelona, and plans to have five more hotels open in Spain within three years. Spain is being increasingly targeted for hospitality development, targeting holiday-makers from the UK. According to one estimate, tourists to Spain spend an average of €36 per day. Foreigners visiting Spain spent €43 billion in 2005. Travelodge is led by CEO Grant Hearn, who joined the company in 2003 from the Hilton Group where he was Managing Director for the UK and Ireland.

Under the Paduan sun

Doughty Hanson Real Estate has acquired a plot of land in Padua, northern Italy, with the intention of developing 400 residential apartments on the site to the east of the city center. The residential apartments will be targeted at first-time buyers and families looking to move to the area, which is undergoing extensive urban regeneration. Construction is expected to start toward the end of 2008. Development is also planned for 17,000 square meters of retail space on the site. This will be the third investment by Doughty Hanson European Real Estate Fund II in Italy, following other residential developments in Rome and Brescia. The firm has created a holding company for the project called DH Residencia with its development partner, BPD Property Development.

Shedding assets

Dutch property company Corio has decided to sell its entire office and logistics portfolio in order to focus on retail property. Having completed an investigation begun in August, the company has hired Jones Lang LaSalle to sell off the portfolio of 70 assets in France and the Netherlands, worth more than €1.1 billion, in the first half of next year. Corio says it will shift its focus to mainly dominant shopping centers and shops, devoting 80 percent of the value of its portfolio to retail. Corio’s current office and logistics property portfolio consists of invested capital of approximately €6 billion, with projects in the pipeline of over €2 billion. Around 32 percent of its office and logistics holdings are in France, with the remainder located in the Netherlands.