PASADENA, CA-The first stores have opened at Starwood Wasserman’s Shops on Lake Avenue development and more are expected to follow soon at the combination retail and restaurant project that Starwood took over from Forest City Development last year.

Shops on Lake Avenue runs between Del Mar Boulevard and San Pasquel Street along Lake Avenue. The new stores include The Children’s Place, Coldwater Creek, Talbots Kids, Talbots Woman and Trader Joe’s, which are expected to be joined by new stores next year when further construction is completed.

The development includes three new buildings that have been designed and oriented to surround and showcase the historically significant building now occupied by Macy’s Department Store. Construction of the three new buildings is expected to be completed in January, when new tenants will include Bank of America, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Corner Bakery, Linens `n Things, Organized Living, Orvis, Peninsula Luggage, Shoe Cellar, collections of Stein Mart, and others.

David Wasserman of Starwood Wasserman says the project is designed to be pedestrian-friendly and to modernize the shopping district while preserving its historic character.” The development was designed by MDA Johnson Favaro Architecture and Urban Design. It includes a new parking structure that increases the total number of parking spaces to 1,197. A requirement for the project, set by the Pasadena Arts Commission, was the installation of a public work of art. Starwood Wasserman has commissioned artist Vito Acconci to create a work for the Hudson autocourt in the center of the complex.

The Macy’s building, originally occupied by Bullocks Pasadena, is the youngest property on the National Register of Historic Places. Designed by the Los Angeles architecture firm Wurdeman and Beckett and completed in 1947, the four-story structure represents Late Moderne architecture in California. The original design incorporated tropical landscaping, and furnishings included custom-made copper chandeliers, murals of tropical scenes and lush tapestries. The top level’s Coral Tea Room was popular with the ladies of Pasadena. Welton Beckett and Associates expanded the store in 1957, added a three-story parking structure and built the I. Magnin department store to the south.

Starwood Wasserman LLC has acquired and developed commercial properties throughout the United States since 1962, including several developments in California. In 1998, Wasserman Associates created the current venture with Greenwich, Conn.-based Starwood Capital, a privately held investment firm that has invested in $7.5 billion worth of real estate on behalf of private and institutional partners since 1991.

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