September 29, 2022

Wisconsin State Journal


Hilldale Transformation Continues with New Retailers and Remodel of Former Steakhouse

The on-going transformation of Hilldale is taking more steps with new businesses but work has yet to begin on a major redevelopment just south of the existing shopping center.

Hilldale has announced that J.McLaughlin, a clothing store for men and women, will soon open next to the UNTUCKit store, just north of Macy’s.

J.McLaughlin was founded in 1977 in New York and has grown to 160 stores nationwide. The company has one other Wisconsin store that opened last fall in the Milwaukee suburb of Whitefish Bay.

Next door to J.McLaughlin’s Hilldale location, Bluemercury is scheduled to open this fall and will become the first Wisconsin location for the nationwide retailer that sells cosmetics, skin care, makeup, perfume and hair, bath and body products.

“Hilldale Shopping Center has been on the Bluemercury radar for a long time. With neighborhood stores in the Chicago area, we felt this was a great extension,” Lily Goodson, Bluemercury’s director of design and construction said in a press release.

The shopping center is also getting a new restaurant. Rule No. One Hospitality Group, which manages Merchant and Lucille off the Capitol Square, will open on Oct. 25 Amara, an Italian restaurant across from Metcalfe’s Market and on the site of the former Pasqual’s Cantina.

The 5,100-square-foot Amara will seat 110 customers indoors, 50 on its patio and serve dinner and lunch daily with brunch specials using ingredients from the Hilldale Farmers’ Market.
on the site of the former Pasqual’s Cantina.

Meanwhile, the former Fleming’s Steakhouse building on the northeast side of the shopping center property has been converted into three spaces. Creando Exploretorium, a bilingual preschool, is up and running on the south side of the building while a Chase bank is scheduled to open soon on the building’s northern end. A tenant for the middle 1,300-square-foot space has not yet been announced.

As for the three acres of land that once held a BMO Harris Bank and at one time a bowling alley to the south of Hilldale, work has not yet begun on a major addition to the shopping center.

WS Development, the Massachusetts-based owner of Hilldale, purchased the property in 2018 with plans for more retail and restaurants and possibly a 90-room boutique hotel, a five-story building with 100 apartment units along Vernon Boulevard and the redevelopment of the AMC movie theater building if the struggling cinema company does not renew its lease.

By Barry Adams

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