…and there’s pretty much nothing there.
Announced in 2015 as a 50 to 60 store home-decor outlet mall inside the dying Regency Square Mall, International Decor Outlet opened last Thursday and has thus far amounted to six actual storefronts.
The mall opened about 10 minutes late, although there was music playing in Suite 800 – presumably an office area for IDO staff – near the former Sears about an hour prior to opening.
About 15 minutes after opening, only two of the six storefronts were open. Only one employee was present between the two stores.
Captain’s Catch, a seafood restaurant that was the first announced tenant of IDO’s space, remains unfinished.
Stepping into the IDO space still evokes the creepy feeling of entering a dead mall. The storefronts that have been built so far are all grouped together right near the entrance to what used to be Belk.
Everything past the storefronts currently being utilized is still barricaded off, including space that will presumably be used for the planned AsianTown cultural center.
The company still plans on gradually opening more storefronts, and Captain’s Catch is expected to open in the coming weeks.
Obviously, IDO’s vision has not been fully realized yet. The question now is whether it even can be, with lawsuits emerging around IDO’s alleged inability to produce storefronts that companies paid for.
Right now, they’re certainly looking like a bust, adding to Regency’s tough luck in the past few decades. And in an area quickly beginning to redevelop, mall ownership may not be able to afford to continue the experiment for very long before redeveloping the entire mall.