Robert Stark as tour guide of Crocker Park’s Phase 3 development is a little like having William Shakespeare lead you on a walk through the set of one of his plays.
Mr. Stark donned a hardhat last Thursday afternoon and hosted 30-some media members through the new $400 million expansion at the lifestyle center.
With the panache of the playwrite, Stark enthusiastically talked about things like vertical integration and creating spaces where people naturally want to interact.
Architectural lines, he said, are designed with the intent of creating a community embrace, a locale where people feel welcome, at home and happy. It’s a concept used in classical Roman design. “That’s part of the magic that, if you don’t know what’s going on, you feel it but you don’t know why,” said Stark.
More whimsically, 318 new luxury apartments will appeal to the artsy American Greetings employee – one such apartment with a wistful rolling overhead door to separate living from sleeping spaces. “We opened up an exterior wall to the place where you spend most of your time,” said Stark.
As Act III of this phase progresses, Market Square will bring to Westlake a community center. “What Cain Park is to Cleveland Hts. and the east side, this Market Square will be to Westlake and the west side,” said Stark, “A multicultural center that provides another dimension to the quality of life people experience here at Crocker Park, here in Westlake, Ohio, and here on the west side of the greater Cleveland marketplace.”
The curtain goes up on the new Crocker Park with the opening of the new Hyatt Place this November. Todd Lentz, General Manager, says the luxury brand is set apart by its theme of ‘purposeful service,’ where guests will find their needs met by personalized responsiveness to their needs.
Headlining the $400 million expansion is the coming the American Greetings Creative Studios. There will also be 250,000 square feet of retail. The 318 luxury apartments will be known as Ovation.
Athleta, offering women’s yoga clothing, swimwear, running gear and clothes for fitness will open later this month.
Coming this fall are Burntwood Tavern, Bonefish Grill, Homage (unique vintage apparel), Beauty Brands and Hyatt Place.
Coming in November are Sur La Table, Texas De Brazil, and Yard House restaurant and brewery. Trader Joe’s will add a 2,000 square foot expansion this winter.
Designer shops include Lululemon Athletica, Lush (fresh, handmade cosmetics), Michael Kors fashion designer, and Teavana, specialty retailer of loose-leaf teas.
American Greetings Creative Studios, designed by leading architectural firm RTKL, will be world headquarters to the $2 billion social expressions company. It will house one of the largest creative studios in the world. The 650,000 square foot building is five floors and will be home to 1,500 writers, artists and business professionals. It is scheduled for completion by July, 2016.