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Leading retail redevelopment in Sydney opens six months early

A further 120 stores will open between November 2010 and late-2011. The opening of a 25-storey commercial tower at 85 Castlereagh Street will mark the completion of the total project, anticipated to be in early 2012.

Westfield Sydney will offer the next generation in Australian retail, delivering a worldclass shopping, lifestyle and dining experience that will confirm Sydney as a global shopping destination.

Located in Australia's best retail area on Pitt Street Mall and bordered by Castlereagh and Market streets, the centre sits between the country's highest-performing department stores – David Jones and Myer. The precinct integrates three former retail centres; Centrepoint, Imperial Arcade and Skygarden and also incorporates Sydney Tower and the former Sydney Central Plaza totalling 92,000 square metres (sqm) of retail space across all sites.

The office component will comprise around 76,500 sqm across three buildings. 85 Castlereagh St with an area of 33,000 sqm will house the Australian headquarters of J.P. Morgan, while the 30,000 sqm tower at 100 Market St is now home to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. A third tower at 77 Castlereagh St has 13,500 sqm of commercial space.

Westfield Group has also recently announced its intention to move its own headquarters from its historic home at 100 William St to the office precinct at Westfield Sydney.

Westfield Group Managing Director Steven Lowy said: "Today marks the reopening of Pitt St Mall, and Westfield Sydney will set a new standard for shopping centres in Australia. We're very excited to open the first stage of the project, some six months early, and look forward to seeing this centre become an essential shopping and dining destination for the people of Sydney, and the 26.8 million domestic and international visitors who come to Sydney each year. When complete, we believe the centre will become one of the iconic downtown retail destinations in the world, with a completed value – including the office precinct – of more than $3 billion."

On completion the new centre will have around 250 stores across seven levels in a number of precincts, each of which offers a distinct shopping and dining experience for shoppers.

The Urban Precinct located on level one (lower ground) provides an avant-garde setting for denim, surf, sport and streetwear brands including Adidas, Nike, General Pants, Surf, Dive 'N' Ski, Lonsdale, Sneakerology, Le Coq Sportif and That Store. The precinct also includes an inaugural fashion incubator concept – 100 Squared – allowing clusters of young designers to have a pop-up retail space.

Level two on Pitt Street Mall provides a main thoroughfare into Westfield Sydney and will be home to iconic Australian and international brands including Tag Heuer, Swarovski, Cue, Guess, Nespresso, Sportsgirl, Napoleon Perdis and Esprit, as well as new-tomarket brands Gap and DKNY Jeans. Australia's first Zara store is scheduled to open in the second quarter of 2011 in this precinct.

Level three's luxury precinct will house international and Australian fashion brands, with those opening in stage 1 including Gucci, DVF (Diane von Furstenberg), Hugo Boss, Salvatore Ferragamo, Mulberry, Carla Zampatti, Wolford, Karen Millen and Stuart Weitzman. More leading designer brands, including Sass and Bide, cK Calvin Klein, Ted Baker, Lloyd, PeepToe Shoes, Little Joe, Ksubi and Zimmermann will be on level four. Stores to open in stage two next year on the designer levels include Prada, Miu Miu, Versace and Christian Louboutin.

Westfield Sydney's dining precinct is located on level 5 and is set to raise the bar in retail dining by providing shoppers with a genuine culinary experience.

Opening today is John Susman's Cloudy Bay Fish Company and Eat Deli Kitchen, a new café concept created by celebrated chef Michael Moore, and Charlie and Co. Burgers, a burger bar by Justin North. Sky Phoenix will re-open on level six, reclaiming its place as one of the most popular yum cha destinations in the heart of the CBD.

Lifestyle retailers will be incorporated into this precinct in stage two, including Borders bookstore on level 5 and JB Hi-Fi, in their largest format store in the city, on level 6.

To complement the premium retail offering and design ambience, Westfield Sydney will offer a range of bespoke services including home and office delivery of purchases, a drop-off and delivery dry-cleaning service, and a premium concierge and gift card offering. All services are available from the concierge desk located on level two.

The centre's unique interior design is by internationally renowned Tokyo-based interior design company Wonderwall, whose projects include the Colette store in Paris and Uniqlo stores worldwide. Westfield Sydney's commercial tower and external building design has been undertaken by Melbourne firm John Wardle Architects, following an international design competition. Both design firms have worked in close collaboration with Westfield design and construction team for the duration of the project.

The completed project encompasses six inter-connected buildings totaling 168,500 sqm of gross lettable area that together will create a world-class retail, tourism and office location in the heart of Sydney's CBD.

Westfield Sydney joins other global flagship destinations in the Group's portfolio, including Bondi Junction and Doncaster in Australia, Century City, San Francisco, Topanga, Valley Fair and Garden State Plaza in the United States and London and Stratford City – to open in 2011 – in the United Kingdom.