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17 September, 2018 - 13:44 By Kate Sweeney

Double boost for Grafton via Debenhams and River Island

River Island is to open a new anchor store at The Grafton in Cambridge – consolidating its existing, smaller River Island Boutique at the centre.

The fashion brand will move into a new space at the front of the centre, taking a prominent position within the newly revitalised Fitzroy Street mall.

One of the High Street’s best-known names, River Island will boost the fashion line-up at the centre, joining H&M, New Look, Next and Debenhams. The new store will feature the brand’s newest look-and-feel concept and will showcase a wider selection of the latest women’s, men’s and children’s clothing and accessories.

Frances Baker, property director at River Island, said: “The programme of improvement works at The Grafton has given us the opportunity to create a bespoke space within the refurbished centre. It will allow us to offer the best shopping experience possible to our customers in Cambridge.”

The Debenhams store at The Grafton is also undergoing significant refurbishment works to introduce its new ‘beauty hall of the future’ concept, upgrade its dining offer and make improvements to the store fit-out.

The revamped store will bring a number of new fashion and cosmetic brands to the store which will join the existing line-up at Debenhams, including Coast, Phase Eight, Monsoon, Ben Sherman, Levi’s, Clarins, Clinique, Estee Lauder and Benefit.

John O’Shea, centre manager at The Grafton, said: “The refurbishment of the centre allowed us to reconfigure the area of space formerly known as Eden Hall, to create new shop spaces, attract new retailers and improve the visitor experience.

“River Island is one of the most popular and well-known High Street brands and the new shop will build on its current offering within The Grafton.

“It’s fantastic to have River Island as part of the centre’s strong retail offering and we are looking forward to its opening later this year, knowing that it will continue to be a firm customer favourite.”

The centre has undergone a £28.5 million refurbishment and reconfiguration to create bright and open spaces and is being marketed as the only destination in Cambridge to offer shopping, dining and leisure all under one roof.

The reconfiguration of the former BHS store has created new opportunities within the centre, with the first floor opened up and connected to the former food court area to create the new Food Social dining quarter.

It is home to the recently opened, independent, family-owned Amélie, the brand’s first restaurant. Food Social will be home to eight casual dining restaurants and will be integrated with the centre’s leisure offer, including a revamped, eight-screen Vue Cinema, and a new Pure Gym health club.

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